Archive for January, 2012

Neelie Kroes spokesperson Ryan Heath was on a propaganda rant on Twitter yesterday. I was wondering if his account had been taken over by Anonymous provocateurs (Anonymous collective ddos the European Parliament website):

who do you think was doing the negotiating [of ACTA]? elected representatives and experts acting under their direction

As a Eurofederalist this makes you a bit sad. Because regardless what you want it to be, no Commissioner would claim to be an elected representative. As someone who tracked the ACTA process with great curiosity, it was a bitter joke. An he went on:

“Also … It was the European Parliament that voted in the European Commission.”

I guess this is how Parliament would like it to be but they know it’s not. The European Commission is no Government, they are not elected but appointed, and speak with a single voice. Article 17 EU Treaty explains it all.

I think it is a real pity that the Concours was abolished and replaced by logic riddle testing from the United States. You would expect a person working for the Commission to be better informed about the institutions he speaks for.


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It’s very simple:

  1. Twitter username, mine for instance is “agonarch“.
  2. Using http://www.idfromuser.com/ you can convert the username into an $ID_number
  3. The rss feed is http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/$ID_number.rss





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Folgende Auskunft habe ich von erhalten von einem mit ihm verwandten Instrumentenbauer:

  • Der Klarinettenbauer Bruno Dietrich ist 1965 verstorben.
  • Aufzeichnungen gibt es vermutlich nicht.

Mich interessiert aus welchem Jahr eine Klarinette B Dietrich Erlbach No 6736 stammt.

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Open Access

Open Access in der Wissenschaft ganz einfach erklärt als Lösung zu dieser Situation:

we write for free (because we want our work read or known), we edit or referee for free and then pay large amounts of money to buy the work back.


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The Kangeroo Group, a lobby group that emerged as an MEP round table in the early stages of the European Parliament and chaired by Karl von Wogau, finally moved its office out of the European Parliament buildings. It was quite odd to have a lobby platform with a letter box address inside Parliament which covered up as an MEP group.

The annual activity report explains:

By the end of this year, we will have to move to a new location. The Eastman Building where we had our office as an intermediate solution will now be needed for the project of the House of European History. We have found a new location in Rue Wiertz which is very near to the premises of the European Parliament.

Their website says:

As of 30 January 2012 we will be relocating to the below address:

The Kangaroo Group aisbl
Rue Wiertz 11
tel: 0032 2 280 60 95 (new)
fax: 0032 2 280 07 84
email: office@kangaroogroup.eu
url: http://www.kangaroogroup.eu

The Kangaroo organises so many events with high level speakers like Commissioners, and is known to generate a down to earth atmosphere, also in my field of interests:

Concerning the Internal Market, we have started two new Initiatives: The Forum on Intellectual Property and a working Group on Consumer Goods. Concerning Intellectual Property, we have debated about the Trade Agreement with India, illicit trade in tobacco products, Intellectual Property and Perfume Creation and the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement.

I assume, they would also in the future take place inside the Parliament building.

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Just stumbled upon the agenda of the development committee DEVE:

24 January 2012, 14.10 – 15.30
3. Living Proof – The impact of effective aid
DEVE/7/08426 Exchange of views with Mr. Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

24 January 2012, 15.30 – 17.30
4. Intellectual Property Rights on genetic resources and the fight against poverty
DEVE/7/08437 Presentation of a DEVE study and exchange of views

6. Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement between the EU and its Member States, Australia, Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland and the USA
*** 2011/0167(NLE) COM(2011)0380
Rapporteur for the opinion:
Jan Zahradil (ECR) PA – PE478.666v01-00
Responsible: INTA – Kader Arif (S&D)
Exchange of views

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Ron Paz found a list of Council working Groups(not sure whether I mentioned it here before) and is digging into the advisory groups of the European Commission. The Commission fully discloses the groups but offers only a burdensome and complicated database. According to Ron Paz the Commission refused to release the flat data under 1049 transparency rules.

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Something from the Trade Committee INTA of the European Parliament.

Amendment of certain regulations relating to the common commercial policy as regards the procedures for the adoption of certain measures – PE 478.430v01-00 – Committee on International Trade

I have no idea what that is about, but it seems important. And in fact it is, the amendments concern “delegated acts”, where the Commission could take regulatory action without prior consultation of the legislator. We really should really look up Article 270 of the Lisbon Treaty regime…

When you want to raise attention, just blink: “certain measures”, how riddiculous!

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Us Trade Representative Ron Kirk in his speech:

“We also have to be vigilant against the temptation for governments to try to capture the next good thing for themselves or their industries. They can do this either by prescribing standards that foreign firms have difficulty meeting, or by excluding foreign service suppliers.

These kinds of approaches typically only hurt a country in the global market, but special interests will often try to convince regulators otherwise. APEC pioneered adoption of ‘technology choice,’ which we are seeking to incorporate into TPP as well.

Technology Choice principles mean:

a) promote technology neutral policies and regulations, where appropriate, that will allow flexibility in the choice of technologies in order to ensure competition, maximize benefits for governments, businesses, and consumers, and bridge the development gap;

b) promote the development and use of open, international, and voluntary standards, that are established through a transparent process, in order to facilitate interoperability among diverse hardware and software systems and contribute to the development of the digital economy;

c) recognize the critical role of the private sector and user groups in the development and use of open, international, and voluntary standards;

d) refrain from mandating standards that have the potential to stifle innovation, limit technology choice, hinder competition, or serve as a barrier to market access, except where such measures are necessary for legitimate public policy objectives (e.g., health, security, and safety);

e) refrain from imposing mandatory technical regulations or requirements that have the potential to stifle innovation, limit technology choice, hinder competition, or serve as a barrier to market access, except where such measures are necessary for legitimate public policy objectives (e.g., health, security, and safety);

g) promote procurement practices, with respect to the acquisition of technology, that are transparent, non-discriminatory, openly competitive, and merit-based, including with respect to the procurement of open source and proprietary software, in accordance with the APEC Non-Binding Principles on Government Procurement;

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An EU proposal on “notice and action” is in the making:

Stakeholders in particular asked for clarifications about how “notice-and-action procedures” should work in practice and this Communication presents an initiative that will help to clarify this. (see question 8).

It starts with a rewrite of the “mere conduit” principle:

Online service providers simply “transmitting” content on the Internet (for instance companies that provide consumers with access to the Internet) cannot be held liable for illegal content that is uploaded by third parties. For example, an Internet access provider cannot be held liable for providing access to an illegal website.

Note that the relationshop between providers and their clients is not covered by the new language.

Online service providers that “host”‘ content on the Internet (for instance websites on which you can view content that users themselves put online) cannot be held liable for illegal content uploaded onto their websites by others, as long as they are not aware of it. However, as soon as they become aware of this illegal content (for example via a notification), they are obliged to remove it or to block access to it immediately.

Finally, governments may not impose a general obligation on online service providers to monitor the content that they transmit or host.

As so many EU phrases “Notice and Action” takes inspiration from the American “notice and takedown”, the difference is “action” and it means blocking and takedown.

“Notice-and-action” procedures refer to rules on removing or blocking of access to illegal content by an online company, after it has received a request to do so. Internet users can submit a notification of illegal content that they have found displayed on the website of an online intermediary (such as a social network, an online vendor or a search engine). To avoid liability, the E-commerce Directive obliges the online intermediary to take action as soon as it becomes aware of the illegal content. Taking action can take the form of takedown (removing content) or blocking (disabling access to content).

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