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Articles about Brussels

Look out, it's 'H' from Brussels: New Euro digi-czars take post

It’s official. Europe’s new digital dream team will feature Andrus “The Robot” Ansip and gaffe-prone Günther “H” Oettinger.* Data protection commander-in-chief will be Vera Jourova (who also gets the pick 'n' mix portfolio of justice, consumers and gender equality), while Margrethe Vestager will do battle with Google under the …
Jennifer Baker, 22 Oct 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
Facebook

What's up, Zuck? Facebook asks Brussels to probe its GIGANTIC WhatsApp deal

Facebook has asked the competition wing of the European Commission to probe its $19bn buyout of WhatsApp in a move to apparently nullify a host of investigations being sparked in multiple EU nations. According to the Wall Street Journal, which cited people familiar with the matter, Facebook appears to be keen to swerve antitrust …
Kelly Fiveash, 28 May 2014
Original "Airplane" image from Paramount Pictures

Brussels' transport chief demands a single European sky to end 'air traffic gridlock'

EC officials are pushing for countries in the 28-member bloc to bring an end to "gridlock in the skies" above Europe, by urging them to be more flexible about national airspace. The EU's transport commissioner, Violeta Bulc, said during a speech in Rome, Italy on Friday that attitudes needed to change to address what she claimed …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 Nov 2014
Google Chocolate Factory

Google close to inking search biz deal with Brussels: report

Google is reportedly edging closer to scoring a settlement deal with competition officials in Brussels regarding the ad giant's alleged abuse of its dominance in the European search market. According to Reuters, Google has submitted a "much better" revised package of concessions to the European Commission's anti-trust chief …
Kelly Fiveash, 29 Jan 2014

Whistling Google: PLEASE! Brussels can only hurt Europe, not us

A few days ago President Obama wrote a cheque he knew he couldn’t cash - and this week the European Parliament will write another. Reports suggest that the Parliament is drafting a motion calling for the break-up of Google and its ilk. Much like Obama’s net neutrality pledge, it’s meaningless, but even so, it’s still hugely …
Andrew Orlowski, 25 Nov 2014
Google and Microsoft

Brussels' antitrust boss not budging on planned Google competition deal

Brussels' antitrust chief Joaquin Almunia is refusing to reverse the planned settlement deal he has agreed with Google over the company's alleged abuse of its dominant market position on search. His seemingly stubborn refusal to change direction on the proposed agreement was highlighted this week during secret, two-hour-long …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Mar 2014
The Register breaking news

Desperate broadband minister in Brussels cash splash dash

Culture Secretary Maria Miller, chief of UK broadband policy, has raced to Brussels this morning to have crisis talks with the European Commission's competition boss, Joaquin Almunia, in a move to get state aid clearance for the £530m rollout of broadband networks in rural parts of the UK. The Department for Media, Culture and …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 Nov 2012
European Union Flag

Google's latest Brussels self-abuse proposal needs 'concrete tech'

Agitators in the European Parliament are pressuring Brussels' competition chief to properly market test Google's new round of proposals to the Commission on its alleged abuse of dominance in the search business. MEPs approved the so-called Tremosa Report on Thursday, which - among other things - urges antitrust commissioner …
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Oct 2013
The Register breaking news

Microsoft to comply with Brussels over browser choice gaffe

Microsoft has reportedly agreed to comply with any sanctions laid down by competition officials in Brussels, who are currently probing the software giant's allegedly mistaken banishment of a "browser choice" screen, which would have allowed European customers to pick which browser they wanted to run on their Windows-based …
Kelly Fiveash, 10 Sep 2012
The Register breaking news

Brussels looks set to OK Apple e-book collusion deal, sources say

Brussels officials have reportedly indicated that a settlement deal proposed by Apple and four of the publishers in Europe's competition probe into ebooks price-fixing with be accepted by the Commission. According to Reuters, which cites two unnamed sources, an offer from Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, the Hachette …
Team Register, 06 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Brussels reviews Google's plan for not being abusive and dominant

The competition wing of the European Commission confirmed this morning that its officials were currently poring over Google's latest search business remedy proposals, after the company submitted a document to Brussels yesterday. "We have received proposals by Google which we are now analysing," said Antoine Colombani, who is a …
Kelly Fiveash, 01 Feb 2013
Apple iPhone 5s: back, front, and side views

Fanbois, prepare to lose your sh*t as BRUSSELS KILLS IPHONE dock

Just spent 50 quid on the latest iPhone dock? You'd better start saving for a new one, because the EU has set a timetable for its plans to force all phone manufacturers to use the same charger. Although the EU is well known for its diversity policies, it has been planning to homogenise phone chargers for some time. Ultimately, …
Jasper Hamill, 20 Dec 2013
The Register breaking news

Brussels 'set to clear' state cash for UK broadband deployment

Europe's competition commissioner has reportedly signalled that he will allow state investment by the UK to improve rural broadband within the next few weeks. According to the Financial Times, only "minor changes" are required by Joaquin Almunia before the plan is granted approval from officials in Brussels. Other commissioners …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 Oct 2012

Muscles-from-Brussels Vanhamme crams into Dell EMEA role

The IT channel's very own muscles from Brussels Dominique Vanhamme has pitched up at Dell to run its networking business across EMEA. The tech industry veteran left Huawei Technologies in September after a year on board, claiming stifling bureaucracy and a lack of empowerment by China HQ hastened his exit. "I've been in …
Paul Kunert, 25 Feb 2013
The Register breaking news

Rivals to Brussels: Google labelling its own stuff won't help us

A Microsoft-backed lobby group that is fighting Google's alleged dominance of the search market in Europe has claimed that any concession by Brussels competition officials that involves labelling could do more harm than good for the ad giant's rivals. ICOMP's legal counsel David Wood argued today that Google's proposed remedy …
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Feb 2013
The Register breaking news

Foundem urges Brussels: REJECT Google's search biz offer

UK-based price-comparison site Foundem has urged competition officials in Brussels to reject Google's formal offer of concessions, which is intended to address the ad giant's alleged abuse of dominance in Europe's search market. Google commands a hefty 90 per cent share of the search business in the European Union. In April, its …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 May 2013
Micro SIM Card

Brussels accuses chip makers of collusion

A five-year investigation in Europe into collusion into the smart card market is heating up, with the European Commission issuing a 90-page “statement of objections” to big-name vendors including Philips and Infineon. The European Commission complaint centres around the silicon used for SIMs, chipped passports, bank cards and …
The Register breaking news

Google preps for Brussels wrist-slap

Reports are emerging that European regulators have won a small victory over Google in their dispute about the impartiality or otherwise of the Chocolate Factory's search results. According to the New York Times, the antitrust investigation will end in the next couple of days with the European Commission accepting a settlement …
The Register breaking news

Brussels clears Liberty Global's £15bn Virgin Media takeover

US billionaire John Malone's company Liberty Global saw its £15bn bid to buy UK telco Virgin Media cleared by competition officials in Europe today. The takeover was waved through completely unchallenged by the European Commission, after the cable giant confirmed it wanted to acquire Virgin Media in February. The antitrust wing …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Apr 2013
germany

German telco watchdog bitten by hound with bigger teeth

Germany’s telecoms regulator is in the firing line after it ignored requests from the European Commission to lower fixed termination rates. Fixed termination rates are the fees telcos charge each other to deliver calls between networks. Since each operator has access to customers on its own network, there is an incentive to …
Jennifer Baker, 07 Nov 2014
The Register breaking news

Brussels blesses British BDUK broadband boost blurt

Maria Miller's mercy dash to Brussels earlier this month appears to have paid off, after the European Commission confirmed today that it had cleared £530m in state aid investment for broadband deployment in the UK - along with what appear to be limp-wristed concessions. "BDUK [Broadband Delivery UK], as a national competence …
Kelly Fiveash, 20 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Google given more time to prove to Brussels it's NOT 'abusive' in search

The two-year long competition probe of Google's search business in Europe is poised to continue at least into the second half of this year, commissioner Joaquin Almunia has confirmed. "We can reach an agreement after the summer break. We can envisage this as a possible deadline," he said on Friday, according to Reuters. The …
Kelly Fiveash, 22 Feb 2013

EU dangles $6bn threat over Google in endless search abuse probe

Formal charges will be meted out to Google if its latest offer to tweak its search engine in Europe fails to satisfy regulators, Brussels stressed today. The American web giant is accused of abusing its dominance position in search – for example, allegedly unfairly burying its rivals way down in its web search results. The …
Kelly Fiveash, 23 Sep 2014

NO MORE DOUBLE IRISH, thunders Dublin. Erm, from 2020 that is

The Irish Finance Minister announced the end of the "Double Irish" tax break in his budget speech on Tuesday. Tech giants such as Facebook, Google, Apple and LinkedIn have taken advantage of Ireland’s lenient tax set-up for decades. But due to external pressure from Brussels and elsewhere, the emerald isle will outlaw the …
Jennifer Baker, 14 Oct 2014

Oi, lobbyists. Cough up your details – EU's new first vice-president

Tech lobbyists trying to water down EU laws may soon find themselves in the spotlight, if new EU Commission supremo Frans Timmermans gets his way. The Dutch politician – who is set to take up the EC's number two spot next month with the official title “First Vice-President in charge of Better Regulation, Inter-Institutional …
Jennifer Baker, 07 Oct 2014
Al Pacino as Scarface

Call the Commish! Ireland dragged into Microsoft dispute over alleged drug traffic data

Last Friday, Apple, Oracle, IBM, HP and other cloud bigwigs (represented by DigitalEurope) begged the EU for help in preventing the US seizing emails stored by Microsoft in Ireland. Now Ireland itself has done the same. On Tuesday night, the Irish authorities formally requested that the European Commission examine whether EU …
Jennifer Baker, 19 Nov 2014

Bloke fighting Facebook in court says ad network claims its users lack 'legal capacity' to sue it

Austrian Facebook-botherer-in-chief Max Schrems says the US social network appears to be saying its users are either too young or too insane to file a class-action lawsuit against it. In August, Schrems filed a legal complaint in Austria against Facebook with a long list of alleged violations of EU privacy laws. Some 25,000 FB …
Jennifer Baker, 26 Nov 2014

Google ordered to tear down search results from its global dotcom by French court

In one of the first rulings of its kind, a French court last month ordered Google to remove links to defamatory information from its search results globally. Up to now, most rulings have limited themselves to the local top level domain – such as Google.fr. However, the decision of the High Court in Paris was that this would be …
Jennifer Baker, 03 Oct 2014

Is new EU digi chief H-dot Oettinger starting a war with his boss?

Things not to do in the first week of your new job: slag off the boss. It seems this memo bypassed the EU's new digital chief Gunther H-dot Oettinger. The new European Commission structure is different to the one Oetti is used to. The new Commission, which took over on 1 November, has seven senior vice presidents in charge of 20 …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Nov 2014
Oliver Twist

Europe's Google wrangle: PLEASE, DOMINANT Mr Schmidt? More?

The European Commission apparently wants Google to make even more changes to its web search results, beyond those that Brussels has already requested. Brussels and Google are trying to reach a settlement following claims the advertising giant unfairly dominates the search market in Europe. The US goliath's rivals allege that …
Iain Thomson, 09 Sep 2014
A map of Europe's solar potential

Google tries to MAP its way out of competition trouble in Brussels

Google's rivals in Europe are fed up with what they see as Mountain View's intransigent attitude towards the now three-year-long regulatory competition probe of its search business. It's been a month since the European Union's antitrust commissioner Joaquin Almunia gave Google's enemies just four weeks to scrutinise the ad giant …
Kelly Fiveash, 27 Nov 2013
Panasonic Viera TX-P42GT30

EU waves remote at Liberty Global's Dutch telly takeover

Liberty Global must sell its Dutch premium pay-TV movie channel Film1 if it wants to take over cable telly operator Ziggo, Brussels' antitrust chief has warned. Since the planned buyout will bring together the first and second largest cable television networks in The Netherlands, the European Union’s competition commissioner …
Jennifer Baker, 10 Oct 2014
The European flag

IP Freely? ECJ to rule on privacy rules for dynamic IP addresses

The European Court of Justice has been asked to rule on the issue of whether or not dynamic IP addresses constitute private data. The request comes from a national German court in relation to a case where the plaintiff claims that "storage of dynamic IP addresses" assigned to him breach his data protection rights. Under EU law …
Jennifer Baker, 28 Oct 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

Who will save Europe's privacy from the NSA? Oh God ... it's Google

A Google lawyer says Europeans spied on by the NSA should get the same rights as Americans – such as the right to sue the US government for privacy invasions. David Drummond, chief legal officer for the information-harvesting monster (Google), published a blog post on Wednesday titled "It’s time to extend the US Privacy Act to …
Jennifer Baker, 12 Nov 2014
The Register breaking news

Brussels' statement of objections against Google is MEATY

Google will be hit with a statement of objections document from the antitrust wing of the European Commission that is reportedly more than 400 pages in length. According to the Financial Times, that tome – detailing complaints from a variety of outfits that allege Google abused its dominant position in the search engine market …
Kelly Fiveash, 02 Dec 2011
Apple email attachment

Official: European members prefer to fondle Apple iPads

The European Parliament’s IT department is attempting to drag MEPs kicking and screaming into the digital age… by letting them play with the latest tablets. The parliamentarians will get to choose which device they wish to keep. DG ITEC – as the Parl’s tech department is known – has set up a play area where the members can …
Jennifer Baker, 19 Nov 2014
Adobe Media Server for HDS/HLS streams on HP servers

Microsoft EU warns: If you have ties to the US, Feds can get your data

Apple, Cisco, Verizon and AT&T are considering joining Microsoft’s battle against the US government to safeguard customers' privacy – but European corps should also take note. Microsoft is embroiled in a legal case to resist US authorities’ efforts to seize emails stored on servers in Ireland. The warrant was issued in December …
Jennifer Baker, 23 Oct 2014
Pingdom Europe Google Data Center Map

Google's 'Right to be forgotten' roadshow is just a 'distraction' – EU digital rights group

European digital rights group EDRi will boycott the last day of Google’s right to be forgotten roadshow on Tuesday because it believes the search giant has “misrepresented the whole issue”. As an example, the group pointed to the search giant's Transparency Report, in which it refers to "URL removal requests" rather than the …
Jennifer Baker, 04 Nov 2014

Northern Ireland website leaves front door open, spills users' data

The creators of this Irish website may be fluent in the language of the Emerald Isle, but they are distinctly unversed in computer security. The Líofa (Fluent) website – a UK government project [PDF] – suffered not so much a data breach as a data giveaway. Users' personal information such as names, addresses, emails and phone …
Jennifer Baker, 18 Nov 2014

Be real, Apple: In-app goodie grab games AREN'T FREE – EU

Apple’s "free" apps are "free" no more, thanks to the EU. Instead of clicking a button labelled with the word, fanbois must now select a button marked “get”. The move appears to be in response to warnings from the European Commission that the “free” label is misleading when games contain in-app purchases and could lead to legal …
Jennifer Baker, 20 Nov 2014
The Register breaking news

Brussels pushes harder in Google probe

Google's regulatory worries are deepening today, with the news that the European Commission has agreed to broaden its inquiries into the dominant search engine's alleged anti-competitive practices. Officials announced they will investigate more claims that Google has rigged its algorithms against rivals. The new complaints come …
Team Register, 17 Dec 2010

Viv Reding quits justice commish role - heads for EU parliament

European justice commissioner Viviane Reding resigned from her Brussels' post today, after taking up her recently won seat in the European Parliament. The Luxembourg Christian Social People's Party politico said in a short Facebook post that her MEP mandate had begun on the same day as the "drastic reduction of tariffs of ' …
Kelly Fiveash, 01 Jul 2014
Daniel Craig in Skyfall

NSA approves Samsung Knox for use by TOP SECRET g-men

US spooks will be allowed to access sensitive government information on their KNOX-locked Samsung gadgets from now on. The South Korean company has been heavily pushing its new KNOX security product and it looks as though its efforts have paid off. The National Security Agency has now approved nine Samsung devices, including the …
Jennifer Baker, 21 Oct 2014
The Register breaking news

Brussels 'mulling probe' into brutal Apple negotiations with networks

The EU is examining Apple's deals with network operators, to ensure it's playing fair - but hasn't yet opened an official investigation. Citing the ubiquitous "people familiar with the matter" the New York Times tells us that various mobile network operators have been sharing their Apple contracts with the commission after the …
Bill Ray, 22 Mar 2013
A map of Europe's solar potential

Looking for a job in Europe? Experienced IT staff needed in UK, Italy and Germany

Qualified IT worker? Fancy working in Europe? Come on over... but only to the UK, Italy and Germany. According to a new report funded by the European Commission, the number of ICT jobs in Europe is growing by about 4 per cent per year. But the number of suitably skilled workers is not keeping pace and by 2015, it predicts a …
Jennifer Baker, 28 Oct 2014
Muscular man stripping off his shirt

'You have no right to see me NAKED!' Suddenly, everyone wakes up at the Google-EU face-off

“You have no right to see me naked!” Paul Nemitz, the European Commission's director of fundamental rights, told Google this week. “A world in which everybody can see everybody naked is wrong.” He was speaking during the finale of the US giant's “right to be forgotten” roadshow – a string of summits organized by the search …
Jennifer Baker, 05 Nov 2014
Vans trainers. Pic: Alex, Flickr

Would you recognise the Vans shoes logo? Neither would Euro trademark bods

Next Thursday trendy trainer firm Vans will try to persuade the European Court of Justice that it absolutely is a distinctive brand. Vans will ask the European Court of Justice to overturn the decision of the OHIM (Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market) not to grant it a trademark for its squiggly line logo. The OHIM …
Jennifer Baker, 03 Nov 2014

Nicked iCloud snaps: Celebrities were 'dumb' – new EU digi boss

You’re so dumb! That’s the new EU Digital Commissioner’s message to celebrities who had their iCloud accounts hacked. Let’s hope Gunther Oettinger hasn’t saved any sensitive information in the cloud or his words may come back to haunt him. The German politician was speaking at the European Parliament yesterday in a bid to gain …
Jennifer Baker, 30 Sep 2014