This project was designed as a targeted assessment of a set of examples rather than as a comprehensive comparative study, and as such, a structured questionnaire was inappropriate for this purpose. Rather, country experts were asked to conduct their analyses of each of the examples cited by the Hungarian Government by means of a semi-structured, six-step methodology. This common approach was designed to ensure balanced and comparable evaluations, while still leaving room to for experts to address the specific regulations cited by the Hungarian Government. In addition, country experts were asked to provide documentation of all relevant regulations, case law and/or materials (see “Documentation Guidelines” below). As such, country experts conducted the assessments following a six-step methodology:
Step 1: Identification and documentation of cited regulation(s)
Identify and provide the text of the specific regulation cited by the Hungarian Government. Provide an English-language translation, an official translation where one is available, or your own where one is not (specify your translation as your own in this case).
Step 2: Accuracy of the regulation’s citation
Assess the accuracy of the citation, in the Hungarian Government’s response, of the regulation(s) it refers to. In this step, country experts should address the following questions:
• Is the citation of the regulation by the Hungarian Government an accurate reflection of the content of the regulation?
• Is the citation of the regulation by the Hungarian Government complete in its description of the regulation in question?
• Specify any omissions, distortions, or mis-translations, where any occur in the citation of the specific regulation.
Step 3: Application of cited regulation
Detail how the regulation is implemented within the country’s broader media regulation environment. The following elements should be considered:
• Describe what additional policies, provisions or laws influence or serve as “checks” o on how this regulation is applied/implemented in practice.
• Describe and document any case law, either national or international, in which o this regulation has been considered or interpreted by the courts.
• Detail any stipulations/elements related to this regulation that might not be o covered or addressed by the Hungarian Government’s statement.
Step 4: Enforcement of cited regulation
Describe the enforcement mechanisms and procedures related to the regulation cited in the Hungarian Government’s statements, addressing the following points:
• Is this regulation enforced? If so, how often, and what threshold for enforcement appears • to be applied? Document any relevant instances in which this regulation was enforced.
• Identify the regulatory body which enforces and/or decides on the enforcement of this • regulation.
• Identify the status of this regulatory body (i.e. a national regulatory agency; a self-• governing press council; a government ministry, etc.), and its regulatory scope within the country’s broader media regulation system.
• Explain what, if any, mechanisms are in place to “check,” review or appeal this regulatory • body’s decisions.
Step 5: Evaluation of statement
Evaluate the Hungarian Government’s response to the criticism at hand by assessing the overall accuracy and relevance of the cited regulation(s).
a) Evaluate, in one to two paragraphs, the accuracy of the Hungarian Government’s presentation of the regulation, taking into consideration the information reviewed in Steps 2 through Steps 4.
b) Evaluate, in one to two paragraphs, the adequacy and relevance of the Hungarian Government’s response to the specific criticism. Is the example of the corresponding regulation cited by the Hungarian Government relevant to the criticism to which the government is responding? Does the corresponding example cited by the Hungarian Government sufficiently address the substance of the criticism, or cover only part of it?
Country experts were asked to follow these basic documentation guidelines throughout their assessments:
• Provide all available links or files to English-language sources of media regulations and/or polices referenced;
• Provide native (original) translations of the country’s media regulations or related materials;
• Provide English-language (or native language where English is not available) translations of that country’s media law(s);
• Personal translations of any material should be indicated as such;
• Provide links to country’s media regulation authority, press council or any bodies involved in media regulation decisions;
• Provide links to any case law, domestic or international, referenced in the expert assessment;
• Any secondary sources must be attributed, with links or proper citation.