The publications in the IRIS Special series tackle current issues in media law and related legal fields.

The themes covered are of direct practical relevance and are explored with academic rigour. The particular value of the IRIS Special series lies in its international approach or the comparison of different legal systems as the case may be. Recognised as a reliable source of information, the series has a track record of supplying both the audiovisual industry and also legislators and other decision makers at national and European level with highly useful data, overviews, ideas and analyses. The European Audiovisual Observatory publishes one or two IRIS Specials annually. Depending on their theme, they each contain 50-150 pages. In many cases, background material – standard-setting legal texts for example – is included.

The issues are available online for free in PDF file hereunder. For a print version, you may purchase it on our online shop for a cost price.

IRIS Special 2017: Media coverage of elections: the legal framework in Europe

12/07/2017 Author: Maja Cappello (ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

This report provides an overview of the most recent rules, case-law and policies across Europe with regard to the coverage of elections and referenda in the various media. Looking into broadcasting and print media, as well as the online dimension, it gives an insight into the differing degrees of...

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IRIS Special 2016 - Media ownership - Market realities and regulatory responses

17/01/2017 Authors: Maja Cappello (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

One of the pillars of freedom of expression in the audiovisual sector is media pluralism. This concept covers, on the one hand, the availability of a variety of choice in the programming of the different media players. On the other hand, it concerns the effective presence of a multitude of...

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IRIS Special 2016 - Regional and local broadcasting in Europe

17/09/2016 Authors: Maja Cappello (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

Already when considering the strong differences across the various institutional systems across Europe, the word region” does not have one and only meaning. This is even more true when speaking about media, which do not necessarily reflect administrative structures, but rather give voice to the...

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IRIS Special 2015 - Smart TV and data protection

01/03/2016 Authors: Maja Cappello (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

A man walks through a shopping centre. His eyes are flashed by a multitude of cameras equipped with eye-recognition software. Immediately the shop windows start to show on flashy screens advertising specially tailored to him.

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IRIS Special 2012 - Converged Markets - Converged Power? Regulation and Case Law

17/12/2012 Authors: Susanne NIKOLTCHEV (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

Eleven years ago, the European Audiovisual Observatory published the IRIS Special entitled “Television and Media Concentration”. Back then it still seemed meaningful to restrict the publication to the regulation of traditional forms of concentration in the broadcasting sector and, to this end,...

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IRIS Special 2011 - The Regulation of On-demand Audiovisual Services: Chaos or Coherence?

12/12/2011 Authors: Susanne NIKOLTCHEV (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

It is common practice that the European Commission sends fact finding letters to ensure that national laws of all member states correctly implement all aspects of EU directives within the given time frame. The letters addressed in March this year to Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark,...

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IRIS Special 2010 - The Regulatory Framework for Audiovisual Media Services in Russia

17/02/2010 Authors: Susanne NIKOLTCHEV (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

2009 saw a steady flow of information on the EU’s Audiovisual Media Services Directive and one does not need a crystal ball to predict the next wave of information that will spill over our desks in 2010, be it to tell us about transposition and implementation or about EU enforcement measures. The...

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IRIS Special 2009 - Ready, Set … Go?

12/07/2009 Authors: Susanne NIKOLTCHEV (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

The Audiovisual Media Services Directive. If the transposition of the EC Directive were to be compared to a competition, it would be between the national legislatures to see which has produced the best domestic law. Many different yardsticks could be used to measure which law is the “best”, such...

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IRIS Special 2009 - Creativity Comes at a Price

12/03/2009 Authors: Susanne NIKOLTCHEV (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

The signatories to the European Social Charter underline in its Preamble the fact that the standard of living and the social-well being of their populations are key to safeguarding human rights. In all likelihood they were similarly aware of how central this is for the prospering of their markets.

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IRIS Special 2008 - Searching for Audiovisual Content

12/12/2008 Authors: Susanne NIKOLTCHEV (Ed.), European Audiovisual Observatory

In 1989/90 Tim Berners-Lee developed the World Wide Web (WWW) for the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN). Barely 20 years old, it has made an unprecedented impact on the way we deal with information. The WWW has Become a key resource for private life and business. To Each of us it...

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