Articles about Eu

The European flag

EU VAT law could kill THOUSANDS of online businesses

New EU tax rules that come into force on 1 January could kill thousands of mini and micro online businesses. The new VAT rules have been on the cards for six years and are ostensibly aimed at preventing big companies (yes, we mean you, Amazon, Apple and Starbucks) from claiming that all their European profit is made in …
Jennifer Baker, 17 Dec 2014
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EU Commission looking for ways to DECLARE WAR on Google

Europe’s Competition Commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, looks like breaking with a five-year tradition of sucking up to Google by issuing the search giant with a Statement of Objections – the first step on a path to punitive measures. According to sources, the Google search dominance case is on the table for the meeting of all …
Jennifer Baker, 02 Apr 2015

EU: Competition Commissioner met Google chief Schmidt

The European Commission is remaining tight-lipped about what was said in a meeting yesterday between Google supremo Eric Schmidt and Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager. A Commission spokesman would only confirm that the meeting had taken place, but would not reveal the substance. But that hasn’t stopped rampant …
Jennifer Baker, 03 Mar 2015
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos

Amazon's tax deal in Luxembourg BROKE the LAW, says EU

Amazon’s sweetheart tax deal with Luxembourg is illegal, according to the European Commission. The Commission’s preliminary findings indicate that the deal, struck back in 2003, constitutes illegal state aid. Since then, Amazon has been paying taxes worth only 4-6 per cent of its operating expenses - an arrangement that the …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Jan 2015
The European flag

EU parliament bans Outlook app over cloudy security: report

The EU Parliament has blocked politicians from using the Microsoft mobile Outlook app in the wake of security and privacy concerns centred on the siphoning of corporate credentials to a third party, according to reports. The Parliament's IT department, DG ITEC, has reportedly told staff to delete the app and reset corporate …
Darren Pauli, 12 Feb 2015

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

Crikey! Three can buy O2, EU regulator says

The European Commission has approved Telefonica’s sale of O2 in Ireland to mobile network operator Three, in a deal originally proposed in June. This makes the network the second largest in the country behind Vodafone, but, as ever in these deals, the Hutchison Whampoa-owned Three - which paid €850m for the network - claims …
Simon Rockman, 02 Jun 2014

Boffins bothered by EU prez's proposed science funding cut

Lobby group Science Europe has added its voice to the growing outcry over European Commission plans to do away with a large chunk of scientific research funding. In a statement on Thursday night, the group said that proposals to remove €2.7bn from the €80bn budget of nano-science project Horizon 2020 were a mistake and would …
Jennifer Baker, 20 Mar 2015
European Union Flag

EU privacy boogeyman unleashed by the very people with boogeyman-slaying weapons

Another day, another report scaremongering about Europe’s big reforms for laws that protect people's personal information. According to a fresh piece of research from Kroll Ontrack and Blancco – experts in data recovery and erasure respectively – 81 per cent of European IT managers surveyed are unfamiliar with the proposed new …
Jennifer Baker, 09 Oct 2014
Burning copyright symbol. Photo by: Martin Fisch http://www.flickr.com/photos/marfis75/ on flickr"

An 'embed' link isn't a new infringement, says EU Court of Justice

The European Court of Justice has decided that even an unauthorised video can be embedded by a third party without creating a new infringement. The case, reported by TorrentFreak, centres around a dispute by a water filtering company, BestWater International, and a couple of men who work as contractors for a competitor (their …
Euro notes

Microsoft outspends world's tech firms with '€5m' EU lobby bill

Microsoft spends more than any other tech company in the world on lobbying the EU, if you believe the figures in the non-obligatory EU Transparency Register. A new online tool called LobbyFacts.eu allows data from the register to be automatically sorted, compared, ranked and analysed in ways not possible through the official EU …
Jennifer Baker, 01 Oct 2014
Sony God of War II

Net neutrality: EU's three-headed beast now at war with itself

Europe’s telecoms ministers are miles from an agreement with the European Parliament on net neutrality, as differences between the EU's governmental bodies become more apparent. The EU’s Telecommunications Council - made up of national ministers - will meet in Brussels tomorrow to discuss how to move forward on the proposed …
Jennifer Baker, 26 Nov 2014

EU operators PLEAD for MERCY, may get roaming rates cut ‘reprieve’

Policymakers are set to propose “no change” in wholesale telecoms roaming rates in the EU as part of a review of the system in 2016, according to a report. The Financial Times said it had seen a draft proposal from the Italian presidency of the European Council which indicated “long-fought proposals on roaming and spectrum …
OUT-LAW.COM, 25 Sep 2014

This isn't the one-stop EU data protection you're looking for

“Nothing is agreed, until everything is agreed.” So said EU Justice Commissioner Vera Jourova on Friday announcing a partial agreement on the proposed new Data Protection Regulation. Clear? It gets worse. Jourova announced that Europe’s data protection ministers had agreed on a so-called “one-stop-shop” mechanism for dealing …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Mar 2015

EU ministers hold Big Meeting on Big Data. But how will they get you to hand it over?

Analysis Europe’s Industry and Internal Market Ministers have been told to have a good long think about Big Data before showing up to their next meeting in Brussels on 2 March. The “theme” of the next Competitiveness council meeting is “Unlocking Europe's digital potential: faster and wider innovation through open, networked and data- …
Jennifer Baker, 18 Feb 2015
Micro SIM Card

Mobile SIM chip-makers 'will be fined by EU' for price-fixing, say sources

EU antitrust regulators are set to fine Samsung, Philips, Infineon Technologies and other tech firms for fixing the prices of chips used in mobile SIM cards, familiar folks whispered to Reuters. The European Commission kicked off a probe of the chips used in telly smart cards, passports, mobiles and ATM cards all the way back in …

EU justice ministers: This is not the one-stop-shop you're looking for...

Despite concerns from individual countries, Europe’s Justice Ministers are a step closer to working out who will protect Europeans’ data from big internationals. The so-called one-stop-shop principle, which was a cornerstone of ex-Commissioner Viviane Reding’s Data Protection Regulation, has been dealt a blow after ministers …
Jennifer Baker, 05 Dec 2014

Knives out for new EU rules forcing govts to reveal hacker attacks

Talks began on a new computer security law for Europe on Tuesday night. National ministers, the European Commission and MEPs got together for the first time in an attempt to nail down the wording in the proposed Network and Information Security (NIS) Directive. When it was proposed by the commission early last year, the draft …
Jennifer Baker, 14 Oct 2014
The European flag

Dawn raids on Orange over TROMBONING allegations were fine, rules EU court

The European Commission was perfectly entitled to conduct dawn raids against Orange, according to the EU General Court. The inspections took place between 9 and 13 July 2013 on four of Orange’s premises as part of an investigation into allegations that Orange was abusing a dominant market position. However, Orange cried foul and …
Jennifer Baker, 25 Nov 2014
Facebook WhatsApp

EU blesses $19bn Facebook-Whatsapp marriage

The European Commission has approved the merger of Facebook and WhatsApp, ruling they are not close competitors – despite both offering free online messaging. After sending out lengthy questionnaires to the pair's rivals, the commission gave the nod to the proposed deal. Competition chief Joaquín Almunia explained: “While …
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
BrickArms' Toy taliban figure

EU battles over 'anti-terrorist' passenger records slurper law

Law enforcement agencies just want all the data they can get their hands on, regardless of justification - so said disgruntled MEPs at the European Parliament’s hearing on PNR on Tuesday. The PNR (Passenger Name Records) Directive is a proposed EU law that would force airlines to hand over personal information about all …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Nov 2014
Fight sticker

Should spectrum hog TV give up its seat for broadband? You tell us – EU

The European Commission wants help in deciding whether or not to allow terrestrial TV to hang on to valuable spectrum. The Commish launched a public consultation on Monday asking industry, academia and users of TV or wireless broadband to speak their brains on how to proceed in allocating the 700 megahertz band. Currently, the …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Jan 2015

Internet gossip has NOWT to do with data protection, EU Commish

Comment Europe’s new data chief has taken a leaf out of fellow European Commissioner “H Dot” Oettinger’s book, delivering a cast-iron “no shit, Sherlock” statement about things people write online. The EU’s new Justice Commissioner Vera Jourova was speaking ahead of a meeting of all the EU’s justice ministers about data protection …
Jennifer Baker, 04 Dec 2014

New Euro digi chief says he WILL consider an EU-wide copyright law

Europe’s new digi chief Gunther H. Oettinger has said that he could have a first draft of new copyright laws within six months. Oetti made the comments to the German Bundestag committee on the Digital Agenda on Tuesday, but with the German barely through the door of his new office at the European Commission – he officially …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Nov 2014

New EU digi tsar survives Twitter grillling

Europe’s new digi Super-Commissioner Andrus Ansip threw himself into the lions’ den today with a public Twitter chat. Challenged at his Parliamentary hearing by MEP Julia Reda to talk to the public, Ansip put his money where his mouth is and attempted to wade through hundreds of questions on Twitter. Chief among questioners’ …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Oct 2014
Qualcomm PdQ 1900

Qualcomm to get it from both sides? EU probe may be coming – report

Mobile chipmaker Qualcomm could be facing into an antitrust probe from the EU at the same time as it fends off a similar investigation in China, according to Reuters. Sources whispered to the news agency that the European Commission may be about to open up an official line of inquiry into a complaint made by Icera, an Nvidia …
The European flag

EU net neutrality: Don’t worry, we’re now safely in the hands of … Latvia

EU member states will push for a “compromise” on net neutrality over the next six months, after Latvia, which took over the six-month rolling presidency of the European Council of Ministers last week, published its list of priorities for the first half of this year. Notably, it says it will seek “an overall compromise” on the so …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Jan 2015
BPI campaign logo: Home taping is killing music

EU court: Mobe makers not liable for users' copyright badness

The European Court of Justice has said that companies providing technology that can make copies of music or films, such as a modern smartphone, don’t need to pay compensation to copyright-holders so long as the economic damage is “minimal”. Both sides in the current UK dispute between the government and parts of the UK music …
Andrew Orlowski, 06 Mar 2015
Screenshot of Microsoft promotional video touting Office 2013's cloud integration

Most cloud apps flout EU data protection rules – study

Three in four cloud services do not conform to the current EU Data Protection Directive, according to a new study. Enterprise cloud visibility firm Skyhigh Networks found that nearly three-quarters (72 per cent) of the cloud services used by European organisations do not meet the requirements of the current privacy regulations, …
John Leyden, 21 Oct 2014
Meme of a dog "typing" at a computer, with the large font phrase "I have no idea what I'm doing' above him.

Labour policy review tells EU where to stuff its geo-blocking ban

If Europe’s new Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker thought he’d notch up an easy populist win last summer when he targeted copyright reform, he’s had a rude awakening. Instead, he’s walked into a firestorm. Critics argued that sidekick Commission VP Andrus Ansip’s favourite proposals on territoriality would “Americanise” …
Andrew Orlowski, 16 Apr 2015

EU copyright law: Is the Pirate Party's MEP in FAVOUR of it?

The Pirate Party's sole MEP, Julia Reda, unsurprisingly says that copyright law in the European Union is not fit for purpose. Reda presented her report on the EU’s current copyright law (the InfoSoc Directive) on Monday. As might be expected from a Pirate Party politician, Reda was critical of the Directive’s failure to grant …
Jennifer Baker, 19 Jan 2015
Viviane Reding

EU Parliament rubber-stamps 'irreversible' data protection reforms

EU justice commissioner Viviane Reding scored an important victory in the European Parliament today after securing support for a rewrite of the 28-nation bloc's data protection laws. Proposed changes to the DP Regulation secured 371 politicos in favour, 10 against and 22 abstentions. Altogether 276 MEPs voted for the DP …
Kelly Fiveash, 12 Mar 2014

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

New EU data chief won't scrap Safe Harbor with US sans Plan B

The EU's "Safe Harbor" data privacy agreement with the US might not really be safe, but Europe's new Justice Commissioner-designate said on Wednesday that she won't ditch the rule without an alternative. Věra Jourová was in front of the European Parliament for her turn in the hot seat ahead of her appointment. MEPs from three …
Jennifer Baker, 01 Oct 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
Euro notes

EU competition chief goes after Amazon’s delux Lux tax deal

Europe’s outgoing competition commissioner, Joaquin Almunia, confirmed on Tuesday that he has launched an investigation into Amazon’s tax dealings in Luxembourg despite his imminent departure of his post. Almunia, who is due to leave office at the end of this month when his replacement, Margrethe Vestager, comes in, recently …
Jennifer Baker, 07 Oct 2014
Use google.com button

SCREW YOU, EU: BBC rolls out Right To Remember as Google deletes links

The BBC will publish a summary of articles removed from Google search rankings under the infamous "right to be forgotten" rules. At a public meeting, the Beeb's editorial policy chief, David Jordan, said the public also had a "right to remember". A ruling by the European Court of Justice in May ordered Google to remove links …
Jasper Hamill, 17 Oct 2014
European Union Flag

It's official: EU chiefs WILL probe Apple's Irish tax deal

The European Commission officially announced today that it is looking into the possibility that Apple received illegal state aid from Ireland in 1991 and 2007. The Commish is examining whether deals done with the Irish tax authorities constitute state aid. Apple’s European arm is incorporated in Ireland and, like most …
Jennifer Baker, 30 Sep 2014

Privacy? What privacy? EU's draft law on your data is useless, say digital rights orgs

Activists have leaked the latest draft of Europe’s planned data protection law – which is supposed to safeguard Europeans' personal information when in the hands of businesses and governments. The proposed rules have been agreed by the European Parliament. Now Euro nations' government ministers, who sit on the Council of the …
Jennifer Baker, 04 Mar 2015

Surprise! Google chairman blasts EU's privacy ruling

Google's chairman Eric Schmidt has attacked judges in the European Union's top court, who ruled earlier this week that the ad giant can be held responsible for the type of personal data that appears on its results pages. The multinational was shocked by the decision, which - in effect - ordered Google to respect existing privacy …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 May 2014

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 consultations …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Oct 2014

EU's super-commish for tech: Geo-blocks on cat vids, music – NOT FAIR

Andrus Ansip, the new EU super-commissioner for all things digital, says he will work to completely abolish geo-blocking of media in Europe – and urged telcos to get on with pushing out high-speed mobile broadband. What started out as a relatively boring and predictable hearing before the European Parliament on Monday took a …
Jennifer Baker, 07 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
Google UK office logos

Google will have to WAIT and SEE if I fine them - EU antitrust chief

New EU competition chief Margrethe Vestager has said that she won’t be rushed into a decision on Google's alleged abuse of its dominance of the search engine market. Vestager described the investigations into Google as “multifaceted and complex” and said she would need some time to decide on the next steps. The case against the …
Jennifer Baker, 12 Nov 2014
Google UK office logos

EU Google-bashing is making us look really bad, say Google bashers

It appears that Google's rivals, who have complained about the ad giant's European dominance, are worried that bashing the goliath can go too far. “It is irresponsible to try and make the Google case seem wider than it actually is,” said Microsoft-backed ICOMP, an organisation representing big businesses that have moaned to the …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Dec 2014
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
European Union Flag

Ex-EU digi supremo Steelie Neelie's net neutrality bid in tatters?

Former EU digital tzar Neelie Kroes’ net neutrality plans for the Continent may be chucked out by national governments. The latest draft of a law prepared by Italy for national delegations to mull over – a copy of which was leaked by digital rights group EDRi here [PDF] – suggests replacing a definition of net neutrality with a …
Jennifer Baker, 25 Nov 2014

EU creative collection agencies want YouTube et al to pay their wages

Collecting agencies for audio-visual creators on Monday urged the European Commission to protect their income in the planned new copyright law and to make online platforms (among others) pay for it. The Society of Audiovisual Authors (SAA), the association of European collective management organisations, called on digi …
Jennifer Baker, 24 Mar 2015
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