Articles about European Union

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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
Logo of Iceland's Pirate Party

Pirate Party runs aground in European Parliamentary elections

Update Voters have not been entirely kind to The Pirate Party in elections for the European Parliament. Sweden's two Pirate Party European Members of Parliament have not been re-elected, with the local authorities tally suggesting a collapse in the Party's vote to 2.2 per cent, down from 2009's 7.1 per cent. In Finland, where Pirate …
Simon Sharwood, 26 May 2014
management regulation1

European Court of Justice allows digitisation of library books

The Fourth Chamber of the European Court of Justice has ruled that libraries can scan books, even if publishers deny them permission to do so, but that subsequent reading can only take place on “dedicated terminals”. The ruling came in the case of Technische Universität Darmstadt v Eugen Ulmer KG, decided on Thursday. The facts …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Sep 2014

European Court of Justice rips up Data Retention Directive

A European Union directive that required ISPs to retain data for two years has been deemed "invalid", Brussels' highest court ruled today. The measure "entails a wide-ranging and particularly serious interference with the fundamental rights to respect for private life and to the protection of personal data, without that …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 Apr 2014
European Union Flag

European Commission plans net neutrality push

The European Commission (EC) has proposed to enshrine net neutrality in its statute books, with President José Manuel Durão Barroso signalling his intention to adopt the “connected continent” agenda proposed by commissioner for the Digital Agenda and veep Neelie Kroes. Barrosso yesterday delivered the European Union's State of …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Sep 2013
The Register breaking news

EU competition inspectors RAID European telcos

The competition wing of the European Commission confirmed today that it was investigating alleged antitrust practices among a number of telecoms giants operating in the 28-member-state bloc. It declined to comment on which countries and companies were subjected to unannounced inspections on their premises at the beginning of …
Kelly Fiveash, 11 Jul 2013
European Union Flag

European Parliament reports HACK ATTACK, turns off public Wi-Fi

The European Parliament has disabled its public Wi-Fi network following the detection of a suspected hacking attack which has been linked to the exposure of weak security practices at the institution by a French media outlet. The private network of the European institution is thought to be secure but techies are advising users …
John Leyden, 26 Nov 2013

Euro THERMONUCLEAR REACTOR PROJECT is in TROUBLE

The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor project is in hot water with the European Parliament for failing to manage EU funds properly. The Parliament’s Budgetary Control Committee MEPs this week advised against approving 2013 spending by ITER personnel due to delayed disbursements and growing budget costs. Although …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Mar 2015
Google faces antitrust charges in the European Union

REVEALED: The 19 firms whose complaints form EU's antitrust case against Google

A new report says the companies whose complaints have been included in the European Union's formal antitrust charges against Google have been revealed, even though the European Commission is still keeping the official list of complainants under wraps. According to the report by Reuters, at least 30 companies filed complaints …
Neil McAllister, 27 Apr 2015
Photo by Monika Flueckiger (WEF)

Round Two in Sky vs Skype trademark scrap goes to Murdoch's men

Update British broadcaster Sky UK has won round two in its trademark infringement battle with Skype. The European Union General Court found on Tuesday that the two names are too similar and could cause confusion. In 2012 and 2013 the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM) upheld Sky’s complaint, but Skype then appealed …
Jennifer Baker, 05 May 2015

Facebook policy wonk growls at Europe's mass of data laws

Facebook's Brussels lobbyist Richard Allan took to the pages of the Pink 'Un on Wednesday morning to have a good old moan about "multiple" EU nations digging around the free content ad network's data-slurping biz practices. He complained that the actions of national privacy watchdogs within the 28-member-state bloc posed a …
Kelly Fiveash, 29 Apr 2015

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
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You have the right to be forgotten 41.3 per cent of the time says Google

Google has published some details of its efforts to comply with the Court of Justice of the European Union's “right to be forgotten” decision that compelled search engines to remove links if citizens ask them to do so. In a new transparency report published a year to the day after the ruling, Google reveals it's received 254,271 …
Simon Sharwood, 14 May 2015

TTIP: Protect our privacy in EU-US trade deal or ELSE, snarl MEPs

MEPs have called on American and European negotiators to guarantee citizens’ right to privacy in an international trade deal. Members of the European Parliament’s civil liberties committee said last week that an “unambiguous, horizontal, self-standing provision” in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) must …
Jennifer Baker, 09 Apr 2015
Emily O'Reilly, European Union ombudsman

US kills EU watchdog's probe into EU cops sharing EU citizens' data

The US has blocked Europe's official ombudsman from accessing Europol documents regarding surveillance and terrorist financing – forcing the watchdog to end a probe into America's relationship with the Euro cops. Europol is the European Union’s law enforcement agency, and the ombudsman investigates complaints of …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Jan 2015
Google HQ logo. Pic: Bob Dormon

Hurry up and just SLAP GOOGLE, MEPs fume at EU commish

The European Parliament took the EU’s executive arm to task on Tuesday for failing to give Google a good kicking resolve the ongoing investigation into Google’s alleged abuse of dominance in the search market. In a statement endorsed by members of the European Parliament (MEPs), it welcomed “further investigations into Google's …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Mar 2015
Belgian cricket. Original pic: Simon Blackley

We need copyright reform so Belgians can watch cricket, says MEP

Battle lines are forming over the EU’s promised copyright reforms, with Brussels’ lobbying machine going into overdrive. On Thursday, the European Film Agency Directors (EFAD), a network of directors of 28 film agencies based inside the European Union, begged the EU Commission to drop its plans for a major copyright overhaul, …
Jennifer Baker, 18 Mar 2015

EU anti-trust watchdog ponders TeliaSonera/Telenor merger

The European Commission is worried that a proposed merger between TeliaSonera and Telenor would be bad for consumers, and is now pondering whether to approve the deal. Both companies provide telecoms services in several European countries, but in Denmark the merged entity would face little competition, leaving the public with a …
Jennifer Baker, 09 Apr 2015
Gunther Oettinger, EU digital commissioner. Pic: Götz A. Primke

Gaffe-prone EU digi chief: We still want our single digital market

CeBIT 2015 Following another gaffe-heavy week last week when he compared net neutrality activists to the Taliban, Europe’s digi-commish Günther H. Oettinger was back on firmer ground today at CeBIT. The EU Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society gave a keynote speech at the international conference, which describes itself as “100 …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Mar 2015
Columns of coins in the cloud

March deadline nears for FAT, JUICY Euro Commish cloud service contracts

EU cloud service companies have until 5 March this year to bid for lucrative EU Commission contracts. The Commish tender call aims to secure about 2,500 virtual machines and 2,500TB of storage for up to four years. The plan is to enable EU institutions to use cloud-based IT services before the end of 2015. As yet, there is no …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Jan 2015

The BIG stretch: Software and flexing your firm's size

A mathematician (a Fields Medal winner, so a real one) once asked an economist whether there was anything in economics that was non-obvious and non-trivial. Well, the answer that came back was: "It's all obvious or trivial except Ricardo on comparative advantage." So, once explained, this analogy is both obvious and trivial, …
Tim Worstall, 11 May 2015

Euro Parliament: Time to rethink DRIP, other snoop laws

Blanket data retention is illegal - or that's the unvarnished view of the legal department of the European Parliament at least. Last year, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that the EU’s own Data Retention Directive, a law that required telco service providers to store information about their customers’ activity, …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Jan 2015

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
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

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
sea_hp_sink

European HP workers take IT giant to court over 'high handed' job cuts

HP's European Works Council* is suing the firm and terminating its works council agreement with the global giant, claiming HP has obstructed the European consultation process over its mega redundancy programme. It now plans to negotiate a new agreement under more recent legislation. Globally around 27,000 29,000 HPers will …
Paul Kunert, 12 Nov 2012
Angry woman on mobile

Euro ministers ditch plan to ban roaming charges

Europe’s telco ministers appear to have done a U-turn over a proposed total removal of mobile phone roaming charges by the end of the year. In 2013, the European Commission proposed a plan - backed by MEPs - to end costly roaming surcharges by the end of 2015. No longer would holidaymakers or business travellers be surprised and …
Jennifer Baker, 05 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
Google faces antitrust charges in the European Union

Google officially doubles EU lobbying – but true figure is surely higher

Google doubled its EU lobbying efforts last year – but the real figure is likely to be much higher than it has declared, as it doesn’t include money spent on ongoing disputes. The Californian data slurper and hoarder overtook [paywall] Goldman Sachs as the biggest lobbyist in the US last year and is the biggest Federal lobbying …
Andrew Orlowski, 29 Apr 2015
TwitterIPO

Twitter fears big EU tech payout to pacify lawmakers over data-slurping concerns

A fretful Twitter has told investors that it may be forced to shell out cash on IT infrastructure in Europe if the Safe Harbor pact between the EU and the US collapses. The profit-shy company, which derives most of its revenues from advertising, revealed its fears in Twitter's annual report published on Tuesday. Meanwhile, it …
Kelly Fiveash, 04 Mar 2015
BBC Testcard

BBC waves £230m of feepayers' dosh at tech backbone deal

The Beeb is dangling hundreds of millions of license fee payers’ pounds in front of network sellers for upgrading its plumbing and serving up connectivity services for years to come. The contract notice, published in the Official Journal of the European Union, reveals Auntie is seeking to appoint a “single supplier” for the next …
Paul Kunert, 07 Apr 2015
European Union Flag

European Commission: Cloud will save us from economic doom

The European Commission is to create cloud computing standards across its 27 member states to spur customer adoption and boost local economies. Cloud has already been hyped to death in the commercial world and now the EC is adding to the marketing bluster. It said in its new strategy document – "Unleashing the potential of …
Paul Kunert, 27 Sep 2012

Euro security agency says MORE crypto needed in gov policy

Governments need to build more privacy into legislation,technology vendors need to step up and compliance cops should crack down to push privacy-enhancing technologies out of the labs, says the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA). The agency has issued a report, Privacy and Data Protection by …
Darren Pauli, 14 Jan 2015
"Armageddon" image courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures/Touchstone Pictures

UH OH, it's MOBILEGEDDON! Your site may lose, well, PENNIES

Comment Google has adjusted its algorithms so websites it deems to be "mobile-friendly" will – from today, Tuesday – rank higher on the advertising colossus' search listings, if they are searched for from a mobile device. Inevitably, the move has triggered gripes to the effect that businesses – in particular small online players – will …
Kelly Fiveash, 20 Apr 2015

Hey, posh boy. Fancy a £200m PHONE THREESOME?

A massive phone and network connectivity services framework between three local authorities is up for grabs, valued up to £200m over four years. A contract notice for by the procurement peeps at the Royal Borough of Chelsea and Kensington was published this week on the Official Journal of the European Union. The tender for …
Kat Hall, 09 Jan 2015
Terror at 20,000 feet

Facebook meets Belgian minister: PLEASE, sir, NOT THE PROBE

Facebook is talking to Belgian authorities in an effort to avoid a Dutch-style investigation into its privacy policy. Representatives of the social network met with the Belgian privacy minister, Bart Tommelein, on Wednesday afternoon in an attempt to persuade him that Facebook’s new privacy policy is not in breach of the Belgian …
Jennifer Baker, 23 Feb 2015
BrickArms' Toy taliban figure

EU, Google, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft: We'll fight terrorists... with WORKSHOPS

The EU, and several of the world's biggest and most powerful tech companies, made little progress in finding ways to combat terrorists' use of online media, following a meeting and dinner on Wednesday night. EU government ministers met Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Microsoft representatives. Although terrorist groups (most …
Jennifer Baker, 10 Oct 2014

UK now part of another Euro data-spaff scheme

The United Kingdom has joined the European Union's new Schengen Information System II (SIS II), a multinational database-sharing platform for member states' authorities to access each others' databases in real time. Following the Council of the European Union's decision of 12 February, the UK has, as of this week, been given …

EU's year-long, muddled search for a privacy head rumbles on

The European Union is yet to find a replacement for its current data protection boss Peter Hustinx, who was supposed to vacate the post in January but stayed on after it became clear that none of the candidates were suitable successors. Late last month, Brussels officials finally re-advertised jobs for the European Data …
Kelly Fiveash, 04 Jun 2014
Privacy image

Google’s privacy policy: Italians probing a little deeper

Google is to be subject to regular on-site spot checks by the Italian data protection regulator under moves to ensure the Chocolate Factory complies with the country's privacy laws. "For the first time in Europe, it will be the subject of regular checks to monitor progress status of the actions to bring its platform into line …
Kat Hall, 23 Feb 2015

'Security, privacy' main barrier to 'government cloud' rollout in EU

Security and privacy issues are holding back "the cloudification of governmental services" in the EU, according to a new report. The European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA) said concerns about how sensitive data is protected in a cloud computing environment have not been resolved. It said data security …
OUT-LAW.COM, 04 Mar 2015

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
Jade Goody and pals

The BNP can rip off your works for ‘parodies’ – but only if it's not racist

The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled on who can use copyrighted work in a parody, and said it’s fair game – as long as it’s not, er, sexist or racist. Traditionally, authors have been able to use moral rights to disassociate their work from a derivative. But this latest interpretation of the EU’s parody exception …
Andrew Orlowski, 03 Sep 2014

Blocking pirate sites doesn't weaken pirates say Euroboffins

In June 2011, authorities in Germany, Spain, France and the Netherlands raided premises suspected of having something to do with kino.to, a site that offered links to a Megaupload-style file lockers containing unlicensed copies of movies, music and TV shows. Not long after the raids, the site shut up shop. Folks associated with …
Simon Sharwood, 15 May 2015
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
The Register breaking news

European child abuse image law a step closer

The European Parliament's Civil Liberties Committee has passed a draft law to remove all child sex abuse images hosted in EU countries. The law says that if images are hosted outwith the EU they should be blocked by individual member states. The Committee made some changes - the law previously made removal of images mandatory …
John Oates, 15 Feb 2011
Smashed Apple Store window

Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'

Russians hackers have exploited a zero-day vulnerability in Microsoft Windows to hijack and snoop on PCs and servers used by NATO and the European Union, says security biz iSight. The software flaw is present in desktop and server flavors of the Redmond operating system, from Vista and Server 2008 to current versions. No patch …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Oct 2014

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
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 …
Drawing of brain

Europe's cyber security agency wants pick your infosec BRAINS

Do you work in the ICT sector? If so, Europe’s top cyber security agency wants you. ENISA (The European Union Agency for Network and Information Security) is looking for 20 experts to join its “Permanent Stakeholders’ Group”. Self-declared experts who work in the ICT sector for fixed and mobile electronic communications …
Jennifer Baker, 07 Nov 2014