- EU - collective management rights in the online world +/-
(Europa) Intellectual property and competition law: collective management rights in the online world. Speech by Torben Toft, Conrad Hotel, Brussels, 8 June 2006.
- EU - Commission challenges funding of Flemish public service broadcaster +/-
(RAPID) The European Commission has requested clarifications from Belgium concerning the public service mission and the financing of VRT, the public service broadcaster in the Flemish community of Belgium. Having examined allegations from several complainants, the Commission's preliminary view is that the current financing system is no longer in line with EC Treaty state aid rules requiring Member States not to grant subsidies liable to distort competition (Article 87).
- EU - Commission imposes penalty payment of 280.5 million on Microsoft +/-
(RAPID) The European Commission has imposed a penalty payment of 280.5 million on Microsoft for its continued non-compliance with some of its obligations under the Commission's March 2004 Decision. That Decision found that Microsoft had abused its dominant position under Article 82 EC, and required Microsoft to disclose complete and accurate interface documentation which would allow non-Microsoft work group servers to achieve full interoperability with Windows PCs and servers. The Decision, adopted under Article 24(2) of Regulation 1/2003, finds that Microsoft has not fulfilled this obligation. Should Microsoft continue to fail to comply, the Decision also increases the amount of the daily penalty payment to which Microsoft could be subject to 3 million per day. Introductory remarks by Neelie Kroes, European Commissioner for Competition Policy, Press conference on imposing penalty payments on Microsoft. Brussels, 12th July 2006. The European Commission's Microsoft Case (Europa)The web-pages referred to provide information about the European Commission's March 2004 Microsoft Decision, the Court of First Instance proceedings relating to that Decision, and its ongoing implementation.
- EU - Commission refers France to Court of Justice for failure to recover illegal state aid +/-
(RAPID) The European Commission has decided to refer France to the Court of Justice under EC Treaty state aid rules for failing to comply with a Commission decision of 2 August 2004 concerning France Télécom. This decision declared the preferential treatment of France Télécom under the French business tax regime incompatible with the Single Market and ordered France to recover the aid already granted from the beneficiary. However, the French authorities have not yet taken any concrete, effective steps to recover the aid.
- EU - Sony BMG ruling rocks European Commission +/-
(out-law.com) In overturning the Commission's decision to allow the Sony and BMG record labels merger in 2004 to merge, the Court of First instance has dealt a severe blow to the Commission in its role as Europe's competition regulator.
- EU - Sports Rights in a converging media technology environment +/-
(Europa) EC Competition Law aspects: Sports Rights in a converging media technology environment, Speech by Torben Toft, London, Broadcasting & EC Competition Law, 30 March 2006.
- EU - Commission proposes regulation on roaming +/-
(RAPID) An EU regulation that would cut the cost of using mobile phones abroad by up to 70% was tabled by the Commission. The Commission wants to ensure that prices paid by consumers for roaming services within the EU are not unjustifiably higher than those they pay for calling within their own country (European Home Market Approach).
- EU - Commission opens public consultation on the protection of minors using mobile phones +/-
(RAPID) The European Commission has launched a public consultation on the potential risks for children of using mobile phones. Input is invited from any stakeholder, including child safety, parent and consumer organisations, mobile network operators, content providers, handset and network manufacturers, and regulators. The consultation will run until 16 October 2006.
- DE - Kinderpsychiaterin: Handys können kindliche Entwicklung verzögern +/-
(Heise) Besitzen Kinder zu früh ein eigenes Handy, kann das ihre Entwicklung verzögern. Das Mobiltelefon erschwere die notwendige Ablösung von den Eltern, sagte Christa Schaff, Fachärztin für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie und Vorsitzende des Berufsverbandes für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie, Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie (BKJPP) in Neuss. "Für Kinder unter zehn Jahren ist ein Handy nicht sinnvoll", sagte die Expertin dem dpa/gms-Themendienst.
- EU - Commission agrees with decision by French regulator on SMS +/-
(RAPID) The European Commission has endorsed the findings by the French national regulatory authority, ARCEP ('‘l´Autorité de régulation des communications électroniques'), to regulate the wholesale prices charged by mobile phone operators for incoming short text (SMS) messages on mobile phones. ARCEP is the first EU Member State regulator to propose such a move.
- Vodafone Content Standards +/-
(Vodaphone) Mobile phones offer a wide range of features including picture messaging, downloadable pictures and video clips, games and internet access. These technologies bring significant benefits to our business and personal lives, but can also raise concerns about misuse. We care about our customers and have developed tools to combat spam and enable parents to protect their children from inappropriate content, contact and commercialism. The implementation of our content standards varies between markets reflecting local cultures and specific areas of concern. see also Privacy.
- UK - Britain is home to nearly 7 million bloggers +/-
(Guardian) One in four British internet users keeps a blog and more than half of that number share their online musings with the public, according to a report. The research suggests that, with 27 million internet users across the UK, the country now holds nearly 7 million bloggers - equivalent to nearly one in nine of the population.
- UK - Young drive 'radical media shift' +/-
(BBC) The 'networked generation' is driving a radical shift in media consumption, says UK telecoms regulator Ofcom. Sixteen to 24 year olds are spurning television, radio and newspapers in favour of online services, says the regulator's study. The 2006 Ofcom report also found that increasingly households are turning to broadband and digital TV. see also Ofcom Press release.
- US - Bloggers: A portrait of the internet's new storytellers +/-
(Pew Internet) A national phone survey of bloggers finds that most are focused on describing their personal experiences to a relatively small audience of readers and that only a small proportion focus their coverage on politics, media, government, or technology.
- US - Parents shaky about kids' safety online +/-
(CNET News.com) The majority of parents say they've taken some action to ensure their child's safety online, but at least some will admit they're clueless about how to protect kids. According to a new study from research firm Harris Interactive, roughly a third of parents said they don't feel confident about teaching kids how to use the Internet safely and responsibly. Nevertheless, as many as 94 percent of parents have turned to Web content filters, monitoring software or advice from an adult friend to help shield their kids from harm on the Net. See Cable in the Classroom Press Release and Internet Safety page.
- US - Teens online: Major study +/-
(Net Family News) Several surveys about online teens have just been released, but the biggest news in Net safety this week was the much-anticipated 'Second Youth Internet Safety Survey' (the first, much-quoted, study came out back in 2000) from the Crimes Against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire, sponsored by the US government-funded National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. see also For kids, more online porn, less solicitations (CNET News.com) Fewer American children are being targeted by sexual predators on the Internet today than five years ago, according to a new study - an improvement researchers attribute to a growing awareness of the problem among young people. The findings come from a survey entitled Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later.