EDRi summary on net neutrality in Europe
Fri 27 Feb 2015, 14:20

After the US FCC’s ruling on net neutrality, what is going on in Europe?

In September 2013, the European Commission produced a badly drafted, incoherent “Telecoms Single Market Regulation”, which included proposals that claimed to support net neutrality, but which would actually destroy it. In March, 2014, the European Parliament adopted its first reading of that proposal, closing the loopholes in the badly written text. This improved text was supported by a big majority in the Parliament.

Now, the third institution in the EU framework, the Council of the European Union (made up of Member State Ministers) is about to adopt its position. After almost exactly a year of discussions, the Council has deleted most of the elements of the badly-written, badly-planned Regulation, leaving just the parts on net neutrality and roaming.

The Council’s draft (pdf)*, discussed on 27 February at Working Group level, will be finalised next Wednesday by Member State Representatives. As a result of extensive pressure from the large Member States (especially Spain), loopholes that would undermine net neutrality have been re-inserted.

Europe's political youth organizations demand strict net neutrality rules
Mon 2 Mar 2015, 19:40

European political youth organizations have demanded that European countries draft strict and clear net neutrality rules that prevent ISPs from discriminating against certain Internet traffic.

In order to keep the Internet open, all data on the Internet should be treated equally, 51 youth organizations said in a manifest sent to European ministers on Monday.

The ministers, gathered in the Council of the EU, are in the process of discussing a new EU telecom law as proposed by the European Commission and the European Parliament that contains clauses on net neutrality and roaming. The Parliament in April last year voted to enshrine net neutrality in EU law, so that all traffic would be treated equally and without discrimination. However, the Council is trying to get some traffic discrimination back into the draft.


France seeks to sanction web companies for hate speech
Mon 16 Feb 2015, 12:36

President Francois Hollande said Tuesday in Paris the government will present a draft law next month that makes Internet operators “accomplices” of hate-speech offenses if they host extremist messages. Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said he will travel to the U.S. to seek help from the heads of Twitter Inc. and Microsoft Corp. as well as Google and Facebook. Spokesmen for the companies did not immediately return requests for comment.

Romania's Ministry of Finance wants a database with all bank accounts
Sat 13 Dec 2014, 15:00

A draft legislative project wants to automatically collect all financial data from all opened bank accounts as a way to combat fraud. The Association for Technology and Internet (ApTI) together with 6 other Romanian NGOs argued against such measures of mass surveillance and commented that they are disproportionate and violate the right to privacy.

The ministry's draft law and ApTI's opinion are available only in Romanian.


Ongoing debate on governmental plans for new data retention law
Wed 27 May 2015, 12:00

The federal government plans to enact a law on data retention. According to the draft law, information on the user’s phone calls, text messages and Internet connection shall be recorded and saved for ten weeks. Information that allows to track a person shall be saved for four weeks. The draft law is criticised by opposition, business representatives and privacy groups.

Digital death
Wed 2 Dec 2015, 15:56

The draft digital bill gives the possibility to decide what will happen to a person’s personal data after its death and the start-ups have already started exploring the possible options. According to the draft law, the internet users can designate a person to execute their wish, if no such specification is made, by default the right will belong to the spouses and/or heirs. If adopted, the law will enable French citizens to instruct Web services what is to be done with their personal data upon their death, which also represent a way of avoiding the multiplication of phantom accounts.