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Jennifer Baker

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Freshly uploaded EU digi-Czar is CLUELESS ON TECH but it's no big deal, says Steelie Neelie

It doesn’t matter that the incoming EU Commissioner for all things digital doesn’t really understand technology, so says Europe's current digi commish Neelie Kroes. Günther H* Oettinger, the man set to take over Steelie Neelie's role in November, is not renowned for being particularly up on Web2.0, with a marked lack of interest …
Jennifer Baker, 21 Sep 2014
Manneken Pis statue, Brussels

Almunia faces GRILLING from MEPs over FAILED Google settlement deal

Europe’s competition chief will face tough questions from MEPs next week over his failed attempts to reach an antitrust settlement deal with Google, which fell far short of sanctions being meted out to the ad giant. Joaquin Almunia - who will leave his post by the end of October - said in Florence, Italy, on Friday that Google …
Jennifer Baker, 20 Sep 2014
Windows 8.1 Update Start Screen

Italy's High Court orders HP to refund punter for putting Windows on PC

Don’t want that preinstalled Microsoft Windows on your new Italian laptop? You’re entitled to your money back, according to Italy’s High Court. In a ruling on Thursday, judges described the practice of only selling PCs with a non-free operating system as “a commercial policy of forced distribution”. They said bundling forces …
Jennifer Baker, 12 Sep 2014
European Union Flag

Welcome your new digital.. commissioners? Likely pair could fill Steelie Neelie's shoes

It’s going to take two men to do one woman’s job at the new European Commission. The new line-up was announced on Wednesday following weeks of speculation and horse-trading of the sort that usually accompanies football transfers. President-elect Jean-Claude Juncker has decided to create two Digital roles to replace the current …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Sep 2014
Facebook WhatsApp

Facebook, WhatsApp wait on cold steel table as Euro Commish ponders painful probe

Competitors of Facebook and WhatsApp have been asked to complete a whopping 88 multiple-choice, multi-part questions that range from the blindingly obvious – “To the best of your knowledge, do users use more than one social networking service?" – to the vague and indefinable – “Please provide any recent examples of consumers …
Jennifer Baker, 02 Sep 2014
EU Bods look to future of UHF

Steelie Neelie: Enjoy your EXCLUSIVE UHF spectrum in 2020, mobile operators

Europe’s digital chief presented a report on Monday that sets out a plan to redistribute access to the Ultra High Frequency (UHF) spectrum band. Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes said that there were obviously differences of opinion on who should have most access, but she said Europe cannot ignore the needs of the growing …
Jennifer Baker, 01 Sep 2014

We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie

Europe’s digital chief Neelie Kroes will reiterate her commitment to “international governance of the internet” later today – that’s code for a smaller role for the US. The European Commissioner will represent the EU at the ninth Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Istanbul, Turkey, next week and will push for a more “global …
Jennifer Baker, 29 Aug 2014
European Union Flag

EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'

Europe’s caretaker Commissioner for Justice says Google et al are trying to throw a spanner in the works of data protection. Speaking at an event in Lyon on Monday, Martine Reicherts, who was appointed Justice Commissioner when her predecessor Viviane Reding became an MEP in May, said certain parties are “trying to use the …
Jennifer Baker, 19 Aug 2014
Spying image

What happens in Europe, doesn't stay in Europe: US giants accused of breaking EU privacy pact

More than 30 big US tech firms are breaking international agreed-upon US-EU Safe Harbor commitments to safeguard Europeans’ data, according to a complaint filed with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Thursday. The Washington-based Center for Digital Democracy (CDD) claims tech giants such as AOL, Adobe, Salesforce, …
Jennifer Baker, 14 Aug 2014

Google's 'right to be forgotten': One rule for celebs, another for plebs

Celebrity names won't trigger a Google right to be forgotten disclaimer notice, but yours will. A Google of most of our names will throw up this disclaimer – which makes us appear rather shady – but Stephen Fry needn't worry Google is covering its back following the so-called right to be forgotten ruling in the European Court …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Aug 2014
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Microsoft and pals applaud UK's 'Google Review' copyright move

The rest of Europe should follow the UK’s example and get rid of copyright levies, says an EU trade group representing Microsoft, Apple, Samsung and thousands of others. Earlier this week, the House of Lords approved a new law which introduces a narrow private copying exception allowing consumers to make digital copies of their …
Jennifer Baker, 31 Jul 2014
Un Frog

French authorities take lead in grilling Google on 'Right to be Forgotten'

Google, Yahoo! and Bing have been grilled by the EU’s top data protection tzars. Representatives from the search engines were asked by the Article 29 Working Party (A29WP) how they plan to manage requests to take down links to outdated or irrelevant information. On 13 May, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ordered Google to …
Jennifer Baker, 25 Jul 2014

Google rival BLASTS Almunia 'n' pals for settlement proposals

The lead complainant against Google in the ongoing European antitrust case has accused the Competition Commission led by Joaquin Almunia of "misleading" other Commissioners and the European Parliament about the search giant’s proposals to resolve the matter. In an open letter (PDF) to the Commissioner on Wednesday, search and …
Jennifer Baker, 23 Jul 2014

Will the next US-EU trade pact prevent Brussels acting against US tech giants?

The European Union government in recent years has proven to be perhaps the most willing to take on the world's major tech companies over digital rights and wrongs. But that could come to an end if planned measures allowing companies to sue governments for lost profits are implemented as part of the next EU-US trade agreement. A …
Jennifer Baker, 18 Jul 2014