Podcast: How open are the government’s data?

Some time ago, the European Union and national legislators recognised the potential of data generated by state institutions. Uncomplicated access to government data is of enormous relevance not only in the entrepreneurial sector, but also in research. The term “open data” is used to describe data that is available to the public. In this episode of “Weggeforscht”, research assistants Justin Rennert and Owen Mc Grath talk about “Open Government Data” and how access to government data is regulated at European and national level.

Podcast: What about the protection of employee data? (Part 2)

There are many other legal disputes and open questions surrounding the topic of employee data protection. In the second part of our double episode on the protection of employee data, research assistants Johanna Voget and Johannes Müller provide an overview of practically relevant topics, such as the claim for damages under the GDPR in the event of data protection violations in employment relationships, current developments in the area of working time recording, the compatibility of national regulations on the dismissal of the data protection officer with the requirements of the GDPR and, last but not least, the right of employees to information and to receive copies of their personal data under the GDPR.

You can find more detailed information on these topics in the DFN-Infobriefe 2/2020 und 10/2022 sowie 11/2022.

Alumni coming back to ITM

At the invitation of the Association for the Promotion of the Civil Law Department of the Institute for Information, Telecommunications and Media Law, this year’s alumni meeting took place on 05.11.2022 on the premises of the Institute.

Institute Director Prof. Dr. Thomas Hoeren first gave an overview of the current developments within the Institute. This was followed by exciting presentations by both current staff members about their work at the Institute and former staff members, covering a wide range of topics.

Johanna Voget and Johannes Müller spoke about the current work within the DFN Association. Marie-Therese Wirtz also reported on the interesting development of the Art Law Clinic, which has been in existence since 2018 and is currently also aligning itself internationally. The interdisciplinary project has been very well received by art students and is enjoying widespread popularity. Justin Rennert gave an informative insight into the current state of media regulation at EU level, which was followed with great interest by the audience.

This was followed by an exciting lecture by Dr Bernard A. Karikari on his function as Head of Corp. Data Protection at Mercedes-Benz. The series of lectures was successfully concluded by Dr. Berthold Hilderink, Head of Employment Legal at UBS Europe SE, who spoke on the question of employee data protection and data protection as a compliance measure.

A subsequent lunch snack offered the opportunity for a broad exchange with current and former employees. During the afternoon programme, the participants then devoted themselves to the history of Münster during a visit to the city museum and were able to learn many an exciting detail about the past of the supposedly so familiar city. The day ended with apple pie and plum crumble at Café Lux, where they exchanged experiences and anecdotes about their time at the ITM.

What about the protection of employee data? (Part 1)

Employee data protection makes new headlines almost daily. Be it problems with the recording of working hours, the right to information or simply the requirements for the processing of employee data. Because the range of topics is so extensive, the Legal Research Unit at DFN is presenting a double series on the current status of employee data protection.

The first part of the double series deals with the questions referred to the ECJ by the Wiesbaden Administrative Court. The case essentially revolves around the applicability of a data protection permission standard from Hesse, which in this specific case is supposed to justify the use of video conferencing software at schools without the consent of the teaching staff. The VG Wiesbaden is of the opinion that the paragraph does not meet the requirements of the corresponding opening clause from the GDPR and therefore may not be used.

Research associates Nicolas John and Owen Mc Grath discuss the legal aspects of the questions referred and discuss the recent submissions of the Advocate General.

The DFN-Infobrief Recht 10/2022 mentioned in the podcast can be found here. Der zweite Teil der Doppelfolge erscheint am 9.11.2022.

PhD seminar in Emden

From October 28-30, 2022, this year’s doctoral seminar of Professor Dr. Thomas Hoeren took place in Emden. 15 PhD students and doctoral candidates presented their PhD drafts in the venerable Johannes a Lasco Library and discussed their research approaches among themselves. During the two days, the focus was on work on copyright in the digital society, on influencer liability, on secrecy law, and on the consequences of the DSGVO in European data protection law. In addition, Hoeren reported on methodological issues, legal philosophical premises of the individual works and stylistic problems based on earlier examples of dissertations. Intensive discussions were also held with the “doctoral supervisor” on the research design. Culinary delights were not neglected either, with matjesbrötchen, Labskaus and Jever beer. In the end, the participants were very amused and enthusiastic about the stimulating atmosphere in Emden, which (hopefully) gave a very good push for an early completion of their doctoral studies.

Anti-SLAPP Directive – The EU against strategic intimidation of journalists

In recent years, working conditions for journalists have deteriorated in many places around the world. There are obvious examples of this: China or Russia, where neutral, state-free reporting is practically impossible and the state systematically persecutes critical journalists. But also in the EU, the work of journalists is exposed to increasing risks.

One factor that considerably hinders them in their work are so-called SLAPP proceedings: Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation. In German, this could be translated as “Strategic Lawsuits Against Intimidation”. These are court cases that are brought with the sole aim of preventing unpopular reporting, without there being a legally tenable basis for the respective lawsuit or injunction application.

The EU Commission has now presented a draft “Anti-SLAPP Directive”. It wants to prevent such intimidation suits. In this episode, research assistants Justin Rennert and Johanna Voget present the draft directive and give an outlook on the further legislative process.

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)