Melinda is a researcher at the Institute for Information Law (IViR). Her research primarily focuses on European media law and the protection of public interest journalism in the face of socio-political and technological challenges. She holds a BSc in Politics, Psychology, Law and Economics (PPLE, University of Amsterdam) and a research LLM in Information Law (University of Amsterdam). At IViR, she has contributed to various research projects and has co-authored studies commissioned by the European Parliament, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the European Digital Rights Initiative, on topics such as the safety of journalists, the regulation of trade in digital surveillance and the legality of data retention practices.
| Rucz, M., van Daalen, O., van Hoboken, J.|
Export control of cybersurveillance items in the new dual-use regulation: The challenges of applying human rights logic to export control
In: Computer Law & Security Review, vol. 48, 2023.
In 2021, the Recast Dual-Use Regulation entered into force. The regulation includes a heavily debated new provision on the export control of so-called cybersurveillance items. This provision departs from the traditional logic of export control rules in multiple ways. Most importantly, it positions human rights considerations as an important factor in the export control of a flexible range of technologies. This article explores the operation, implications and challenges of this new human rights-orientated approach to export control of digital surveillance technologies. Taking the definition of cybersurveillance items as a starting point of the analysis, the article draws on surveillance-related case law of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the European Union, to define the potential scope of application of the open-ended cybersurveillance concept of the Regulation. By exploring how this concept maps to technologies often connected with human rights infringements, such as facial recognition, location tracking and open-source intelligence, the article highlights the challenges of applying this new approach and underscores the need for its further development in practice.
| Rucz, M.|
SLAPPed by the GDPR: protecting public interest journalism in the face of GDPR-based strategic litigation against public participation
In: Journal of Media Law, vol. 14, ed. 2, pp. 378-405, 2022.
Strategic litigation against public participation is a threat to public interest journalism. Although typically a defamation claim underpins a SLAPP, the GDPR may serve as an alternative basis. This paper explores how public interest journalism is protected, and could be better protected, from abusive GDPR proceedings. The GDPR addresses the tension between data protection and freedom of expression by providing for a journalistic exemption. However, narrow national implementations of this provision leave the GDPR open for abuse. By analysing GDPR proceedings against newspaper Forbes Hungary, the paper illustrates how the GDPR can be instrumentalised as a SLAPP strategy. As European anti-SLAPP initiatives are finetuned, abusive GDPR proceedings need to be recognised as emerging forms of SLAPPs, requiring more attention to inadequate engagement with European freedom of expression standards in national implementations of the GDPR, data protection authorities’ role in facilitating SLAPPs, and the chilling effects of GDPR sanctions.
| Irion, K., Rucz, M., Senftleben, M.|
Contribution to the public consultation on the European Media Freedom Act
The announcement of the European Media Freedom Act (EMFA) has provided an important impulse for the development of new legal rules seeking to safeguard and support a free and pluralistic media environment in the European Union (EU). As indicated by Commissioners Věra Jourov and Thierry Breton, the initiative is set to address a wide range of persisting challenges faced by European media outlets, including political and economic pressures, unjustified interference with editorial independence, failing business models supporting journalism and issues surrounding media pluralism. Considering the broad spectrum of concerns and the centrality of a pluralist media environment for the health of democracies, the European Commission’s commitment to the EMFA is commendable and urgent. With this submission, we would like to take the opportunity to respond to the European Commission’s public consultation on the EMFA.
| Koot, M., Rucz, M., van Daalen, O., van Hoboken, J.|
The new rules for export control of cyber-surveillance items in the EU
2021, (Commissioned by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.).
| Bouchè, G., Fahy, R., McGonagle, T., Rucz, M., Sangen, A, van der, Seel, M., Stapel, S.|
Safety of journalists and the fighting of corruption in the EU
2020, (Prof. dr. T. McGonagle - Project Leader - European Parliament - Policy Department for Citizen's Rights and Constitutional Affairs - Directorate-General for Internal Policies - July 2020).
Journalism and journalists face a growing range of threats, including violence and harassment; the misuse of defamation and other laws against them, and restrictive measures on freedom of information and expression adopted in response to the Covid-19 crisis. States must ensure a safe and favourable environment for journalists to perform their public watchdog function. This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the LIBE Committee, examines the overall chilling effect of crimes and threats against journalists and explores various regulatory and other measures to counter them.
This report was requested by the European Parliament's Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs.
| Rucz, M.|
Does the doctrine of exhaustion apply to videogames purchased digitally? French court says oui
In: Kluwer Copyright Blog, 2019.
| Rucz, M.|
Territorial scope of the “right to erasure” limited to the EU
In: IRIS, 2019.