This new publication series from 2015 covers a selection of topics that are high on the European regulatory agenda, offering comparative and reliable information on a chosen topical issue in the perspective of the ongoing reforms of the legal framework on European and national level.


For each chosen topic, this new publication looks into:

  1. the economic and technological backdrop
  2. the international and European regulatory framework
  3. the national implementation of these provisions
  4. self- and co-regulation
  5. case-law
  6. recent trends.


The former version of the IRIS Plus series (until 2014) was a paid-for publication that featured a combination of a lead article, related reporting and a Zoom section, comprising overview tables, market data or practical information.


All published issues are now available online for free (see below):

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DLI IRIS Plus 2014-2

IRIS Plus 2014-2: Media in the Courtroom

Author: Andrei Richter, Faculty of Journalism, Lomonosov Moscow State University

Published: 01/09/2014

« C‘est une expérience éternelle,
que tout homme qui a du pouvoir
est porté à en abuser ;
il va jusqu‘à ce qu‘il trouve des limites »

Montesquieu, De l‘esprit des lois, Buch XI, 1748.

The model of separation of powers (legislature, executive and judiciary) in its different declinations forms the basis for the political structure of most democratic states in the world. Not formally one of these powers, the press is nevertheless often called “the Fourth Estate” or “the fourth branch of government”, since it provides information to the people on matters of public concern and thereby acts as a guarantee that these state powers do not abuse their prerogatives.

In order for the press to carry out this “sacred duty”, it needs access to information on the doings (and “undoings”) of these three powers. In the case of the judiciary, this includes not only the ability of the press to report on decisions adopted by the courts but very importantly also to report on court proceedings. And for this to happen the press must inter alia be present in the courtroom.

Obviously, the press is also composed of humans, and these can abuse their own prerogatives, or cause unnecessary damage to individuals. Sometimes, transparency can go so far as to infringe upon freedoms and rights of others. That is why Article 10.2 ECHR expressly provides that the exercise of freedom of expression can be limited in order to protect inter alia the reputation or rights of others or to maintain the authority and impartiality of the judiciary.

This IRIS plus provides you with an overview of legal issues regarding court reporting by audiovisual and online media. The Lead Article reviews relevant legislation as well as recent case law in the Russian Federation. Thereby it addresses fundamental legal issues concerning the balance between access to information and the right to privacy, as well as possible limitations to freedom of information and media freedom, prejudgment by the media, etc. The Zoom brings a pan-European perspective to the issue at hand. It introduces the fundamental principles at stake enshrined in the ECHR and explores specific concerns linked to media reporting of criminal proceedings, which have proved to generate, in some prominent cases, a great deal of media interest. The Related Reporting section complements the Zoom with articles published in our newsletter IRIS and further explaining relevant legal instruments of the Council of Europe and related jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights.