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Deference in International Courts and TribunalsStandard of Review and Margin of Appreciation$
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Lukasz Gruszczynski and Wouter Werner

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198716945

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198716945.001.0001

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Experts in Hate Speech Cases

Experts in Hate Speech Cases

Towards a Higher Standard of Proof in Strasbourg?

(p.254) 14 Experts in Hate Speech Cases
Deference in International Courts and Tribunals

Uladzislau Belavusau

Oxford University Press

Chapter 14 analyses the role that is played by expertise in the recent (2008–2012) hate speech cases decided by the ECtHR. The chapter argues that the Court has worked on the basis of three, not necessarily compatible, models when dealing with hate speech cases: (a) a low standard of proof model, relying on an implicit role of experts; (b) a higher standard of proof model, leaving room for an explicit accent on expertise; and (c) an instrumental model with an over-reliance on expertise, resulting in a non-intrusive standard. As a result, the case law on hate speech fails to offer clear guidance on how the Court should review expert opinions, in part because, as the chapter argues, the Court has so far not been willing to clarify the criteria for expert evidence.

Keywords:   hate speech, freedom of expression, expert opinions, European Court of Human Rights, ECtHR, standard of proof, margin of appreciation

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