Articles about Consultations

Gunther Oettinger, EU digital commissioner. Pic: Jennifer Baker

Euro Commission wants to pick your brains on telcos and net access

The European Commission on Friday launched two vast public consultations on internet speed and quality. The so-called 360° review of telecoms and internet rules is open until December 7 and is seeking input from users, organisations, public bodies and businesses. The telecoms questionnaire looks at network, service and …
Jennifer Baker, 14 Sep 2015
Panic button

How can we manage this internet thing? The Euro gov needs YOU

The European Commission is asking for help in drawing up laws to govern the internet. On Thursday it launched yet more public consultations designed to inform bureaucrats attempting to help create the digital single market. The two new consultations are so broad as to be almost unmanageable: one on “geo-blocking” and the other …
Jennifer Baker, 25 Sep 2015
willy wonka oompa loompa

You want a 6% Google Tax? Get lost, German copyright bods told

After months of deliberations, Germany's national arbitration board on copyright has told German copyright collection company VG Media to go whistle over its proposal for a six per cent “Google Tax”. Although the ancillary copyright tax law does indeed apply to Google, said the board, which is part of the German Patent …
Jennifer Baker, 28 Sep 2015
Crop of doctor with pen and clipboard

NHS England backs down over another data extraction scheme

NHS England has backed down from yet another data extraction scheme, after details emerged of backdoor plans to gather patient appointment information. The episode has echoes of the on-going debacle, a scheme that has been heavily criticised for its lack of public consultation in sharing patient information with …
Kat Hall, 22 Jul 2015

Want the EU to work on making cloud snoop-proof? Speak up, my good 'stakeholder'

The public has less than two weeks to respond to one of the vaguest European Commission consultations ever… but one that will decide where the Commish spends its money. The deadline for submissions to the public consultation on Cloud Computing and Software has been extended by a week to 17 October. But unlike many …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Oct 2014
Parliament House Canberra by Flickr user OzMark17 used under CC Share and Share alike licence

Turnbull's transformers plan business access to YOUR GOV ID DATA

Australia's new Digital Transformation Office (DTO), the digital disruption brainchild of communications minister Malcolm Turnbull, has outlined plans for an ambitious new government-led digital identification plan that will meld government and business data on individuals to create a single digital ID. The plan's emerged in …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2015

South Korea mandates spyware installation on teenagers' smartphones

A law requiring the mass installation of spyware on teenagers' smartphones suggests that the frightening level of population control exercised by its neighbours in "Best Korea" has rubbed off on the Republic's administrators in Seoul. The Republic of South Korea's Communications Commission, a media regulator modeled after the …
putin topless

Putin tells Google, Twitter, Facebook: Have a vodka and censorship on the rocks

The Russian authorities have told Google, Facebook, and Twitter that they face prosecution if they do not comply with the country's crackdown on free speech. Under a new Russian law, the three US firms must register as "organizers of information distribution," and store all data on Russian users in data centers on Russian soil. …
Iain Thomson, 26 Sep 2014

Oz Defence Dept 'not punitive' with crypto export controls

Australia's Department of Defence is meeting with security professionals, including Google, to nut out the finer points of that country's dual-use control laws in what is described as a move away from a punitive crack-down on information security data sharing. Nine Defence delegates and five of 15 invited industry and other …
Darren Pauli, 08 Jul 2015
Image from Shutterstock 161369036

Ofcom won’t hold back in latest mobile spectrum auction

Comment Ofcom has announced its plans for the promised auction of 2.3GHz and 3.4GHz spectrum. And it’s “steady as she goes”. A total of 190 MHz of new spectrum will be auctioned: 40 MHz of spectrum within the 2.3 GHz band (2350-2390 MHz) and 150 MHz of spectrum within the 3.4 GHz band (at 3410-3480 MHz and 3500-3580 MHz). But, …
Simon Rockman, 26 Oct 2015

Now even EUROPE is slapping down ICANN in internet power struggle

European governments and internet registries have sent a stinging message to the board of domain name overseer ICANN warning it to stop trying to avoid limits on its absolute authority. At a joint meeting in Brussels of the European Commission's High Level Group on Internet Governance (HLIG) and the Council of European …
Kieren McCarthy, 08 Oct 2015
Burning copyright symbol. Photo by: Martin Fisch on flickr"

We’ve got a leak of the European Commission's copyright plan

The European Commission has pedalled back from making radical changes to Europe’s copyright regulations, according to a leaked version of its draft Copyright Framework seen by The Register. It’s a draft that isn’t due until 9 December. The Commission rules out creating a new copyright title - “one title to rule them all” - …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Nov 2015

Sacre block! French publishers to sue Adblock maker – report

French publishers are reportedly planning to sue Eyeo, the makers of AdBlock Plus, over the upstart's practice of charging money to allow online adverts to pass through its filter software. According to L'Echos, the lawsuit is being considered by the French Internet Advertising Bureau and GESTE, a French publishers and content …
Iain Thomson, 09 Dec 2014
management regulation1

Belgium will drag Facebook to court if it has to – privacy minister

Belgium’s privacy tsar says he is ready to hand the Facebook case to prosecutors if consultations with the social network over alleged EU law breaches fail. This follows a report detailing several instances where Mark Zuckerberg's firm is alleged to have broken EU laws. Before snapping on the rubber gloves for an in-depth …
Jennifer Baker, 03 Mar 2015
Mobile phone mast

Ministry of Fun tries again on mobile mast planning permission

The Department of Culture, Media and Sport has announced a consultation (PDF) on reforming the Electronic Communications code. This is crucial ingredient to the “landmark” not-spots deal announced at the back end of last year. Most of the parts of the package in the deal were things which were going to happen anyway, but one …
Simon Rockman, 27 Feb 2015

Lawmakers should grab red pen and let it RIPA on snoops law – experts

Legal experts have called for a full legislative review of the controversial Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) that goes "far beyond" updates to the codes of practice governing its use. This week the Home Office published a code of practice for the use of covert surveillance under RIPA, and on Tuesday it also …
Kat Hall, 11 Dec 2014
David Cameron

David Cameron 'guarantees' action on mobe not-spots. Honest

It’s election time, so all the party leaders are promising everything to everyone. The latest one from David Cameron is good mobile phone coverage. According to Mobile News, Cameron told a meeting of chartered accountants: “These things aren’t discussed in some dusty corner of a business park. They are discussed round the …
Simon Rockman, 28 Apr 2015
Ofcom has great power over mobiles

Ofcom wants to ease the pain of switching mobile networks. Good luck

UK regulator Ofcom has started a consultation aimed at consumers to find out how hard it is to switch mobile phone networks, and eventually put in place processes which reduce the pain of switching, while also eliminating “slamming” where a company fraudulently migrates a customer. The consultation is a follow-up to previous …
Simon Rockman, 29 Jul 2015
Cell tower, view from below. Image by

France will flog off 700MHz to boost mobe broadband while UK dithers. Thanks, Ofcom

Updated British mobile phone coverage will lag further behind the rest of Europe this year: now the French are auctioning off valuable spectrum space, at 700MHz, to high-speed mobile networks. Ofcom, in its recent strategy review, said it’s targeting 2022 for a similar allocation (although possibly sooner). However, its French …
Simon Rockman, 02 Apr 2015
Joe Tucci EMC

EMC, HP blockbuster 'merger' shocker comes a cropper

+Comment EMC has been holding secret merger talks with HP that have since stalled, according to industry sources. The negotiations are said to have lasted almost 12 months, during which Dell executives mulled buying parts of EMC. But at the heart of the discussion was a proposed $132bn merger of the storage giant and HP, according to …
Chris Mellor, 22 Sep 2014

Internet governance group pushes on without, er, internet organizations

The controversial internet governance group NetMundial has rejected calls to delay the creation of its "coordination council" – and launched without the support of the technical community nor the International Chamber of Commerce. NetMundial was born out of a meeting in April between the governments of Brazil, Russia, China, …
Kieren McCarthy, 24 Dec 2014
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Mergers scuttle strategy as Ofcom reneges on spectrum promise

Ofcom wants to hold onto the 60MHz of the 190MHz of spectrum it had announced would be for sale, and is floating the idea of scaling things back, citing a change in market conditions for the sale, slated for the end of this year or the beginning of next. In the revision to the proposals, Ofcom said: “Since the publication of …
Simon Rockman, 27 May 2015
Fraud image

You MUST supply dying customers even if they're in administration, thunders

Just two tech firms responded to a government consultation on a potentially “catastrophic” change in the law that will force suppliers to keep kit and services flowing to biz customers that are in administration. Under proposals laid out by Business Minister Jo Swinson, providers of “essential IT” will be “prevented” from …
Paul Kunert, 11 Feb 2015

Brandis and PwC silent on Xmas Eve metadata quiz

Neither the Attorney-General’s department nor PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) will comment on why a questionnaire sent to carriers and internet service providers on Christmas Eve asked about the cost of storing metadata for either 12 or 36 months, rather than the 24 months suggested in draft legislation. As Vulture South reported …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Jan 2015
management regulation2

Singapore decides 'three strikes' laws are too intrusive

Singapore's Ministry of Law has decided that a “three strikes” regime for online copyright infringement is too intrusive for Internet users, and has excluded such an approach from consultations over takedown mechanisms. The consultation, described in full here, is canvassing changes to that country's copyright act to deal with …
Microsoft Nokia logo

Windows Phone app devs, this is for you

Promo The Register has teamed up with Nokia UK to promote the firm’s rewards programme for Windows Phone and Windows 8 app devs. Called DVLUP, the programme deploys a "gamification model" which allows members to compete with one another and test themselves. Developers can earn XP points and redeem them against a whole host of rewards …
David Gordon, 10 Jan 2014

Have PIXmania. In fact, have £59m with it too, Dixons tell German VCs

Dixons Retail has forked out £59m to convince German venture capitalist mutares AG to take loss-making web shop PIXmania off its hands. And so ends the retail firm's costly flirtation with the online gadget souk seven years after it coughed €266m for a 77 per cent stake in the biz and a little over a year after it bought the …
Paul Kunert, 27 Sep 2013
Dixons Carphone Warehouse

Dixons and Carphone Warehouse confirm £3.7bn MEGA-BORG

Dixons Retail and mobile phone shop Carphone Warehouse have confirmed their £3.7bn merger after months of talks, creating one of the biggest retailers in Blighty. Dixons, which already owns Currys and PC World, will combine with the mobe-purveyor to form Dixons Carphone in a 50:50 merger, rather than an acquisition of one side …
The Register breaking news

Oz data breach notification law close

With a terse statement – “The committee recommends that the Senate pass the Bill” – Australia has moved a small step closer to having mandatory data breach notification. Nothing in politics is ever certain, of course, but the committee looking into Australia's proposed data breach notification bill has unequivocally supported it …

Axe falls: Virgin Media plans to kill 600 management jobs

Virgin Media is shedding up to 600 management jobs in the wake of Liberty Global's takeover of the British telco. The Register understands that the cost-cutting restructure is intended to help the company focus on growth. A source close to the situation told us that, in the coming months, most of the other UK-based positions …
Kelly Fiveash, 20 Sep 2013

HP: This Xmas, get the SACK... and not the one filled with presents

HP has sent its staff a Christmas missive informing them that some of them could be sacked in early 2014. The cheery letter said that some workers will have the choice of taking voluntary redundancy. However, if too few people choose this option, HP will be forced to start getting rid of people. Workers affected by the scheme …
Jasper Hamill, 23 Dec 2013
The Register breaking news

Third round of consultations on 2.6GHz auctions

Ofcom has announced a third consultation on the bidding process for 2.6GHz and 2010MHz, both frequencies being desirable for the next-generation telephony crowd including both the WiMAX and LTE standards. The newly-available spectrum will be up for auction in 2008, but Ofcom started the consultation process in December 2006, …
Bill Ray, 21 Dec 2007
Scrooge McDuck

Startup-land finds a sympathetic ear in Canberra

Startup-land's liking for gifts of scrip as a way to keep wages and burn rate low has found sympathy within Australia's Treasury, which has opened a public consultation on the topic of employee share schemes. Reform of the system was promised by Australia's previous government, as we reported last year, but the ball seems to …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Jan 2014
The Register breaking news

Axe hovers over John Lewis IT jobs

The Reg understands that an "increase in efficiency" at John Lewis's Computer Services team could involve job cuts. Computer Services at John Lewis handles the back-end IT for John Lewis, Waitrose, and It would appear that over 100 jobs in the department are facing the axe. A reader has told us that …
Anna Leach, 26 Jul 2012

HP: Yes, we plan to axe another 7,100 European staffers

Exclusive HP has confirmed that more than 7,000 workers in Europe are headed for the chopping block, with sources telling us that a good whack of the cuts will be made in Enterprise Services. In June 2012, HP began consultations with union and staff over plans to get rid of 8,000 jobs in the region, and it confirmed that thousands more …
Paul Kunert, 24 Oct 2013
The Register breaking news

Pay cut consultations could trigger redundancy payments

Companies which follow computer maker Hewlett-Packard's lead and attempt to cut staff wages risk triggering redundancy law payouts if they do not consult staff properly, an employment lawyer has warned. Hewlett-Packard is seeking to cut the pay of its 300,000 staff by between 2.5% and 15%, depending on the level of job they …
OUT-LAW.COM, 24 Feb 2009
The Register breaking news

Microsoft promises Metro developers 'fame and fortune'

With the official launch of Windows 8 just a few months away, Microsoft has kicked off a new incentive program that promises developers "fame and fortune" if they build Metro-style apps for the new OS. The program, hosted on Microsoft's Generation App website, follows on from an earlier, similar initiative for Windows Phone. …
Neil McAllister, 20 Jul 2012
Google logo

Google testing 'Helpouts' video support service

Google has started testing “Helpouts”, a new service that it says is “a new way to connect people who need help with people who can give help, over live video, anytime, anywhere.” The Chocolate Factory's public Helpouts sub-site doesn't offer a lot of data, but the support section does, suggesting it will be possible to make …
Simon Sharwood, 23 Aug 2013

Android malware spotted hitching a ride on mobile botnet

Kaspersky Lab has reported the first sighting of mobile malware (Android, of course) that piggybacks on the back of a separate mobile botnet and uses the resources of other malware once it's installed. "For the first time malware is being distributed using botnets that were created using completely different mobile malware," …
Iain Thomson, 06 Sep 2013
The Register breaking news

ICO: Education ministry BROKE the Data Protection Act

Exclusive The Department for Education broke the Data Protection Act after it exposed the email addresses, unencrypted passwords and sensitive answers of members of the public who filled in an online form about parental controls on the net, The Register can reveal. However - despite the breach - the Information Commissioner's Office has …
Kelly Fiveash, 19 Oct 2012

Shoppers love fondling iPads to fill out sex health survey

A survey conducted using iPads has helped an NHS cluster reach out more people in quicker time for their views on local health services. The Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire NHS cluster gave researchers iPads that had a special software installed and asked them to gather opinions at Eden shopping centre in High Wycombe. The …
The Register breaking news

America to send space radar to Australia

A base in Western Australia will host a Southern Hemisphere outpost of America’s Space Surveillance Network (SSN), with a space-watching radar to be relocated from Antigua. The agreement to move the radar formalises a proposal detailed in the Defence Capability Plan released in July. In a communiqué released at the end of the …
The Register breaking news

Ofcom set to fatten up London's White Space TV spectrum

Next year Londoners will get access to 72MHz of unlicensed radio spectrum, all in the prime sub-1GHz band, as Ofcom prepares to open the TV airwaves to anyone with a database handy. Ofcom's new consultation on opening up White Space frequencies shows London as the biggest winner thanks to the presence of the Crystal Palace …
Bill Ray, 09 Sep 2013
EU Kids Online

BT tweaks WORDING of sex-ed web block after complaints

BT has adjusted the wording of one of its web-filtering categories, following The Register's story late on Friday when the telecoms giant admitted that UK parents who don't want their kids to seek advice about their sexuality online could block access over its network. However, while BT continues to offer that control to its …
Kelly Fiveash, 23 Dec 2013
Concept of the Unimodal SkyTran system in use in Dubai.

WCIT leak: CHAOS will REIGN if telco talks fail

As delegates prepare for the intolerable privation of a five-star junket in Dubai to debate re-framing the decades-old International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs), a leaked management briefing from September warns that chaos may reign if the talks don’t reach a consensus outcome. The document (at WCIT Leaks, here (PDF)) …
The Register breaking news

Dell expects slow Windows 8 demand in enterprise

Microsoft is betting big that Windows 8 will revive its flagging fortunes, but the feedback from Dell is that the new operating system will be a consumer release, and it's not expecting too much impact from Redmond's Surface tablets either. In the earnings call to discuss its latest financial results, Dell's CFO Brian Gladden …
Iain Thomson, 21 Aug 2012
The Register breaking news

Outfit which will save your Freeview TV from 4G interference stands up

The UK's mobile networks, in agreement with Ofcom and the Ministry of Fun, have set up a company to spend the £180m assigned to make sure that Freeview reception isn't knocked off the air by 4G. Digital Mobile Spectrum Limited will fill the role described as "MitCo" (mitigation company) in the various consultations and …
Bill Ray, 18 Oct 2012

How long will the next NBN Co board last?

Wanted: NBN Co board members. Essential: telecommunications network rollout experience; ability to conduct a thorough review of the current NBN rollout; conduct weekly performance reviews of network rollout without interruption to operations. Desirable: willing to be dismissed at short notice. Cost blowouts and missed targets …
The Register breaking news

Up to 390 TalkTalk jobs face axe as Northampton site shuttered

ISP TalkTalk is shuttering its Northampton office, "simplifying" its UK operations and "creating jobs nationally" while threatening to axe others. It said in a statement that "collective consultations" would take place with 390 staff across its sites at Northampton, Preston and Warrington. TalkTalk added: There will be …
Kelly Fiveash, 24 Apr 2012

IBM plans to axe staff in UK, Ireland despite hefty profits

Exclusive IBM is planning a round of redundancies in the UK and Ireland despite healthy growth in profits in the second quarter. In company documents seen by The Register, employees in the UK-based Strategic Outsourcing Delivery division were told Big Blue will start an employee consultation period of 30 days on 2 August. El Reg …