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News

Publications

Truce in the Copyright War? The Pros and Cons of Copyright Compensation Systems for Digital Use

Bodó, B.

Handke, Christian W.

Quintais, J.

This paper discusses copyright compensation systems (CCS) -- that provide licenses for downloading and non-commercial use of copyright works in return for a fee -- in the light of welfare economics and transaction cost economics. Recent empirical studies suggest that CCS could improve social welfare at least for recorded music. The general theme of the theoretical discussion in this paper is a simplicity-flexibility trade-off. On the one hand, CCS seek to reduce the costs of administering and trading copyrights online. On the other hand, standard copyright licenses distort the market mechanism. This paper discusses the costs and benefits of various CCS proposals compared to alternative ways of managing copyright online.

16-01-2019

Blockchain and the Law: A Critical Evaluation

Bodó, B.

Ferrari, V.

Giannopoulou, A.

Quintais, J.

16-01-2019

Related rights in United States law

Gervais, D.J.

This article explains the origin of the rights of performers, sound recording producers, audiovisual producers and broadcasters in the United States. As US law does not formally recognize a category of ‘related rights’, some of those rights exist under copyright law and are, therefore, subject to copyright rules such as the originality requirement, the possibility for authors to claim rights back 35 years after a transfer by contract, and the work-made-for-hire doctrine. Other rights are protected under different statutes.

11-01-2019

Thou shalt not sample...without permission!

Jütte, B.J.

Quintais, J.

10-01-2019

Het is allemaal fake

Korthals Altes, W.

Opinie

10-01-2019

Fake news: een plaatsbepaling

Nieuwenhuis, A.

10-01-2019

Interested in diversity: The role of user attitudes, algorithmic feedback loops, and policy in news personalization

Bodó, B.

Eskens, S.

Helberger, N.

Möller, J.

Using survey evidence from the Netherlands, we explore the factors that influence news readers’ attitudes toward news personalization. We show that the value of personalization depends on commonly overlooked factors, such as concerns about a shared news sphere, and the depth and diversity of recommendations. However, these expectations are not universal. Younger, less educated users have little exposure to non-personalized news, and they also show little concern about diverse news recommendations. We discuss the policy implications of our findings. We show that quality news organizations that pursue reader loyalty and trust have a strong incentive to implement personalization algorithms that help them achieve these particular goals by taking into account diversity expecting user attitudes and providing high quality recommendations. Diversity-valuing news readers are thus well placed to be served by diversity-enhancing recommender algorithms. However, some users are in danger of being left out of this positive feedback loop. We make specific policy suggestions regarding how to address the issue of diversity-reducing feedback loops, and encourage the development of diversity-enhancing ones.

08-01-2019

De Raad van Europa en online desinformatie: laveren tussen zorgen en zorgplichten?

McGonagle, T.

Na alle hype rondom ‘fake news’, lijkt het gebruik van de term nu een behoorlijke terugslag te krijgen. Waar ‘fake news’ in 2016 en 2017 in rap tempo tot een buzz word was uitgegroeid, lijkt het inmiddels een vies woord te zijn geworden. Het heeft een militante connotatie gekregen en wordt in toenemende mate gebruikt om kritische journalisten en media te beschuldigen van het verspreiden van valse berichten, en daarmee hun werk en reputatie te ondermijnen. Daarom wordt steeds vaker de term desinformatie gebruikt als vervanger van ‘fake news’. Dit artikel staat stil bij deze terminologische verschuiving en legt uit waarom het van belang is afstand te nemen van de term ‘fake news’. Vervolgens wordt de angst voor schadelijke gevolgen van ‘fake news’ of desinformatie met de nodige nuchterheid geanalyseerd. Is er reden voor zorg en zo ja, welke juridische, politieke en praktische maatregelen heeft de Raad van Europa tot haar beschikking om (online) desinformatie tegen te gaan? Verder wordt ook onderzocht of, en in hoeverre, deze maatregelen hun grondslag vinden in de (negatieve en) positieve verplichtingen van Verdragspartijen bij het EVRM. Het artikel sluit af met een conclusie en enkele aanbevelingen voor het ontmantelen en het terugdringen van online desinformatie.

18-12-2018

Kroniek Telecommunicatierecht

van Eijk, N.

07-12-2018

De/politisering van de Waarheid: Complottheorieën, alternatieve feiten en nepnieuws in het tijdperk van de postwaarheid

Harambam, J.

The Truth dominates many public discussions today. Conventional truths from established epistemic authorities about all sorts of issues, from climate change to terrorist attacks, are increasingly challenged by ordinary citizens and presidents alike. Many have therefore proclaimed that we have entered a post-truth era: a world in which objective facts are no longer relevant. Media and politics speak in alarmist discourse about how fake news, conspiracy theories and alternative facts threaten democratic societies by destabilizing the Truth ‐ a clear sign of a moral panic. In this essay, I firstly explore what sociological changes have led to (so much commotion about) the alleged demise of the Truth. In contrast to the idea that we have moved beyond it, I argue that we are amidst public battles about the Truth: at stake is who gets to decide over that and why. I then discuss and criticize the dominant counter reaction (re-establishing the idea of one objective and irrefutable truth), which I see as an unsuccessful de-politisation strategy. Basing myself on research and experiments with epistemic democracy in the field of science studies, I end with a more effective and democratic alternative of how to deal with knowledge in the complex information landscape of today.

23-11-2018

Democratizing algorithmic news recommenders: how to materialize voice in a technologically saturated media ecosystem

Harambam, J.

Helberger, N.

van Hoboken, J.

The deployment of various forms of AI, most notably of machine learning algorithms, radically transforms many domains of social life. In this paper we focus on the news industry, where different algorithms are used to customize news offerings to increasingly specific audience preferences. While this personalization of news enables media organizations to be more receptive to their audience, it can be questioned whether current deployments of algorithmic news recommenders (ANR) live up to their emancipatory promise. Like in various other domains, people have little knowledge of what personal data is used and how such algorithmic curation comes about, let alone that they have any concrete ways to influence these data-driven processes. Instead of going down the intricate avenue of trying to make ANR more transparent, we explore in this article ways to give people more influence over the information news recommendation algorithms provide by thinking about and enabling possibilities to express voice. After differentiating four ideal typical modalities of expressing voice (alternation, awareness, adjustment and obfuscation) which are illustrated with currently existing empirical examples, we present and argue for algorithmic recommender personae as a way for people to take more control over the algorithms that curate people's news provision.

23-11-2018

The Golden Age of Personal Data: How to Regulate an Enabling Fundamental Right?

Irion, K.

Oostveen, M.

New technologies, purposes and applications to process individuals’ personal data are being developed on a massive scale. But we have not only entered the ‘golden age of personal data’ in terms of its exploitation: ours is also the ‘golden age of personal data’ in terms of regulation of its use. Understood as an enabling right, the architecture of EU data protection law is capable of protecting against many of the negative short- and long-term effects of contemporary data processing. Against the backdrop of big data applications, we evaluate how the implementation of privacy and data protection rules protect against the short- and long-term effects of contemporary data processing. We conclude that from the perspective of protecting individual fundamental rights and freedoms, it would be worthwhile to explore alternative (legal) approaches instead of relying on EU data protection law alone to cope with contemporary data processing.

20-11-2018

Privatised enforcement and the right to freedom of expression in a world confronted with terrorism propaganda online

Coche, E.

The purpose of this paper is to explore the risks of privatised enforcement in the field of terrorism propaganda, stemming from the EU Code of conduct on countering illegal hate speech online. By shedding light on this Code, the author argues that implementation of it may undermine the rule of law and give rise to private censorship. In order to outweigh these risks, IT companies should improve their transparency, especially towards users whose content have been affected. Where automated means are used, the companies should always have in place some form of human intervention in order to contextualise posts. At the EU level, the Commission should provide IT companies with clearer guidelines regarding their liability exemption under the e-Commerce Directive. This would help prevent a race-to-the bottom where intermediaries choose to interpret and apply the most stringent national laws in order to secure at utmost their liability. The paper further articulates on the fine line that exists between ‘terrorist content’ and ‘illegal hate speech’ and the need for more detailed definitions.

06-11-2018

Media Constrained by Context: International Assistance and the Transition to Democratic Media in the Western Balkans

Irion, K.

Jusić, T.

This book compares the results of twenty years of international media assistance in the five countries of the western Balkans. It asks what happens to imported models when they are applied to newly evolving media systems in societies in transition. Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Serbia undertook a range of media reforms to conform with accession requirements of the European Union and the standards of the Council of Europe, among others. The essays explore the nexus between the democratic transformation of the media and international media assistance in these countries. The cross-national analysis concludes that the effects of international assistance are highly constrained by local contexts. In hindsight it becomes clear that escalating media assistance does not necessarily improve outcomes.

31-10-2018

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