Articles about Eu

Kindle Big Brother

Denmark mulls new EU-defying session-logging law

Danish authorities look set to bring back mandatory internet session logging despite an EU ruling last year that blanket data retention is illegal. Last May the European Court of Justice (ECJ) concluded that the EU Data Retention Directive was “a particularly serious interference with fundamental rights”, meaning countries …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Jan 2015

EU digi-chief clashes with robo-veep over geo-blocking

Gaffe-prone Commissioner Günther H-dot Oettinger is at it again. In statements to the German press (he rarely talks to anyone else), Oetti directly mocked his boss Andrus Ansip’s desire to end geo-blocking. Former Estonian prime minister Ansip – known as The Robot back home – has made eradication of geo-blocking his prime goal. …
Jennifer Baker, 31 Mar 2015
Facebook privacy image

Facebook preps for class action lawsuit as angry EU mob lawyer up

A class action against Facebook over alleged breaches of European privacy laws is being heard in a Vienna district court today. Austrian law graduate Max Schrems and 25,000 other Facebook users are suing the social network. They allege that Facebook violated European citizens' “fundamental rights” (defined in the European …
Kat Hall, 09 Apr 2015

EU breaks 'legally binding' lobbying register promise

Civil rights groups are claiming the EU Commission has already broken its promises on lobby and reporting transparency, with a framework for lobbyists containing no legally binding elements now set to be implemented. Following his confirmation hearing in October, Frans Timmermans, number two at the EC, vowed to create a …
Jennifer Baker, 22 Dec 2014
European Union Flag

EU bods Oetti and Ansip: We must digitise EVERYTHING

The EU's warring digi-chiefs — Vice President Andrus Ansip and Commissioner Gunter H-dot Oettinger — finally seem to be singing from the same hymn-sheet. On Tuesday, both gave speeches highlighting the need for the wider industry to “get digital” as well as bemoaning the Digital Skills Gap™. Ansip and Oettinger quoted the same …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Apr 2015
Zombie rising from the grave

EU's zombie data-grab plan climbs out of coffin

The European Parliament is divided over new efforts to revive a plan to slurp citizens' travel info. The Passenger Name Records (PNR) system was thought dead after the parliament rejected it in 2013, but following the Charlie Hebdo attack national governments have again insisted that the only way to prevent such tragedies is to …
Jennifer Baker, 26 Feb 2015
management strategy1

Console makers game the EU Commission to avoid energy-use law

Games console manufacturers have agreed a deal with the European Commission that lets them off the hook for meaningful rules on energy efficiency. Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony have persuaded the Commish not to include their products in the EcoDesign Directive and to instead rely on a voluntary agreement. Although the Commission …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Apr 2015

Nothing says 'Taliban' quite like net neutrality, eh, EU Digi Commish?

Comment Gaffe-prone Gunther is at it again. This time the EU Digi-Commissioner Gunther H-dot Oettinger has described the enforcement of "uniform" net neutrality as "Taliban-like". Unsurprisingly digital rights activists have not been pleased at being compared with a fundamentalist organisation judged by the UN to be responsible for the …
Jennifer Baker, 10 Mar 2015
Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/eddiedangerous/ licensed under creative commons http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ please attribute

End well: this won't. European Copyright Society wants one EU law to rule 'em all

Copyright laws in every EU country should be the same, the European Copyright Society (ECS) has said. In a letter to the European Commission's digital commissioner Günther Oettinger (4-page 499KB PDF), the academic think tank on copyright said "actual Union-wide unification … of copyright" as opposed to simply further …
OUT-LAW.COM, 05 Jan 2015
eBay

eBay sides with Google in EU competition case? Only if you cherry-pick

Update eBay has come galloping to Google’s rescue in its EU anti-trust case... if you define a “market” in the way the Chocolate Factory wants. eBay chief executive John Donahoe told the Financial Times that in the shopping sector it is a major competitor to Google, thus backing up the Chocolate Factory’s argument that it is not …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Apr 2015
Ryanair

Top EU court: Ryanair data barrel must be left unscraped

Irish low-cost airline Ryanair can stop whomever it wishes from scraping content, according to the European Court of Justice (ECJ). PR Aviation – which runs price comparison websites WeGoLo.com and flylowcost.com – had sought to use the EU’s Database Directive to prove that Ryanair was wrong to impose contractual terms …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Jan 2015

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
The NSA Unchained

The big boys made us do it: US used German spooks to snoop on EU defence industry

Germany's BND spy agency spied on European politicians and enterprises at the behest of the NSA for over a decade. Der Spiegel reports (in German) that for years the NSA sent its counterparts at the BND (Bundesnachrichtendienst – Germany's Federal Intelligence Service) thousands of so-called selectors – IP addresses, emails, and …
John Leyden, 24 Apr 2015

One digi market to RULE 'em all: Get with the net neutrality plan, guys, moans EU digi-veep

Europe’s new digi chief has told telecoms ministers to get their act together and deliver strong net neutrality rules. Andrus Ansip, European Commission veep for all things digital, said he had “no illusions” that this would be easy, adding: “I really hope that an agreement can be reached over the coming months. Otherwise, I …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Dec 2014

EU-turn: Greenpeace pressure WON'T mean axing of Chief Scientist

After months of mixed signals and confusion it appears that the European Commission will make a U-turn and keep the role of Chief Science Advisor. Last November, Chief Scientific Advisor (CSA) Anne Glover revealed that the Commish planned to scrap the role, which is “to provide independent expert advice on any aspect of science …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Jan 2015

So what would the economic effect of leaving the EU be?

Worstall @ the Weekend Now that the election's over (result unknown as I write) it's possible to perform for a reader request: what would the economic effect of Britain leaving the European Union be? Given that I'm a known 'kipster I didn't want to do this pre-election: I'm here at El Reg despite my 'kipness, not because of it and thus wanted to steer …
Tim Worstall, 10 May 2015
The European flag

EU annoys industry and activists with net neutrality proposal

Europe’s telco ministers have finally come to an agreement on net neutrality – but it’s one that makes both digital activists and industry unhappy. On Wednesday, a council made up of EU member states' telecoms ministers published its position on the so-called Telecoms Package and managed to alienate almost everyone with a stake …
Jennifer Baker, 05 Mar 2015
Costumed pirate

Economics prof denies digital pirates plundered €20bn from EU coffers

A European academic has rubbished claims by the Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) group that digital piracy cost the EU more than €20bn between 2008 and 2011. Making the assumption that the creative and service sectors performed at the same level, a grand total of around one million jobs and €47bn of …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Oct 2014

Europe could be drowned in 'worthless pop culture' thanks to EU copyright plans

Comment Expect more bland Europop and formulaic Hollywood blockbusters in your future if a proposal by European Commissioner Andrus Ansip are implemented, cultural industries in smaller European states say. Groups predict that European culture will look a lot less diverse if the robotic single market Kommissar succeeds in forcing pan- …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Mar 2015
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

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
Use google.com button

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
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
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 …

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
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

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
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
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 …

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

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 rather phallic tracks of the balloons seen on spacenear.us

EU Digital Single Market plan: We will compromise fast, and compromise early

The European Commission has finally unveiled its big Digital Single Market Strategy (DSM). Despite leak after leak over recent weeks, Digi Commissioners Andrus “The Robot” Ansip and Gunther H-dot Oettinger took to the podium together (for the first time) with due pomp and ceremony on Wednesday. But what they presented was a …
Jennifer Baker, 06 May 2015
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 …

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
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
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