Dr. Judit Bayer, habil. is associate professor of media law and international law at the Budapest Business School, Hungary, and a Schumann Fellow at the University of Münster. Her research interest is in human rights, freedom of expression, media freedom and pluralism, and privacy. She has a PhD in constitutional law (internet regulation) and habilitation in constitutional law (data protection).
Judit Bayer has authored several books and articles in the field of freedom of expression and the media, in particular on the liability of internet service providers, of social media platforms, freedom of expression on the internet, public service broadcasting, and human rights. She has authored numerous articles and has presented papers in international conferences. She has participated in impactful research projects, among others on media pluralism within the European Union in 2016, on disinformation and propaganda and its impact on human rights and democracies in 2018, on hate speech and hate crime in the European Union and its online content regulation approaches, and others – related to freedom of expression – are in progress.
Dr. Judit Bayer is running and participating in projects on platform regulation:
In cooperation with the University of Essex and the University of Helsinki, ITM has organised a virtual workshop series between November 2020 and June 2021. Most of the papers are collected into a volume edited by Judit Bayer, Bernd Holznagel, Lorna Woods and Päivi Korpisaari.
Professor Holznagel and Judit Bayer participate in the Topical Program “Algorithmization and Social Interaction” led by Prof. Dr. Heike Trautmann, and initiated by a consortium of researchers from the Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, and Faculty of Educational and Social Science at the University of Münster.
The purpose of the interdisciplinary research cooperation is to explore how (artificially intelligent) algorithms can be used to influence social interaction, in particular, the regulative and legal implications for individuals and the whole society.
The cooperation is launched in March 2021 with a series of academic discussions and an interdisciplinary workshop to discuss the possible approaches to tackling disinformation.
The research is funded by the DAAD scholarship for ‘Forschungsaufenthalte für Hochschullehrer und Wissenschaftler, 2020′.
Realisation of the project is planned between 24 Mai – 22 July.
Research question: In what way can co-regulation – like the NetzDG – ensure individual users’ right, through ensuring due process and transparency?
Research hypothesis: The current state of the play is to push the power – and responsibility – of deciding about questions related to freedom of expression on the social media platform providers. In the triangle of freedom of expression social media platforms enjoy a disproportionate power to the detriment of the other two actors: authorities and individuals.
4 – Disinformation in the light of freedom of expression
A policy research to inform the European Parliament is led by Dr. Bayer, with the participation of current and former members of the ITM and Professor Holznagel.
In recent years, disinformation actions increasingly merged with genuine content, and their sources became even more difficult to identify. Particularly strong impacts were seen in cases where disinformation and manipulative propaganda were spread by individuals with high levels of political authority, who enjoy the trust and attention of citizens. Diverse legislative and policy measurements were introduced by various Member States and third states, and civil society responses also flourished, particularly in relation to increasing resilience against disinformation. The aim of the research is to provide recommendations on legislative and policy measures which respect freedom of expression, and help to protect democracy, the rule of law, and fundamental rights from the impact of disinformation.