Newsletter on media policy in Europe
[NORDICOM] European Media Policy, a newsletter from Nordicom, provides an up-date on policy developments at the European level. The April issue gives an overview of some main media questions - such as Internet governance, data protection and copyright - that have been discussed during the last months or will be on the agenda in the near future.
- In early April the European Parliament voted on the latest legislative draft for the EU ”Connected Continent” telecoms package. MEPs want a rigorous definition of net neutrality and clear rules to prevent internet access providers from promoting some services at the expense of other.
- In March the Obama administration announced plans to relinquish US government control over the administration of the Internet, a move warmly welcomed by the European Commission and many others. "This is an historical step in making Internet governance truly global, and marks major progress towards the development of a multi-stakeholder model as advocated in the Commission's recent Communication" said the EU Commissioner for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes.
- The European Parliament should withhold its consent to the EU-US trade deal if blanket mass surveillance by the US National Security Agency (NSA) does not stop, warned MEPs in March in a resolution wrapping up their six-month inquiry into the surveillance activities unveiled last year, adding that data protection should be ruled out of the trade talks.They also condemn EU countries involved in the surveillance – among them Sweden – and demand measures.
- The European Parliament voted on its first reading of the draft legislation on 12 March. MEPs want strong personal data protection and have in some instances even tightened the rules proposed by the European Commission.
- On 8 April the EU Court of Justice declared the much-criticized Data Retention Directive to be invalid. ”It 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 interference being limited to what is strictly necessary”, explains the Court in its landmark ruling hailed by many as a major victory for civil rights in Europe.
- It is not unlikely that the recent harsh ruling by the EU Court against the EU data retention directive (see above) will influence discussions in the Council and maybe help Parliament in the forthcoming negotiations with the Council on the data protection reform.