Commenting on the new EU commission presented today, Julia Reda, Member of the European Parliament for the German Pirate Party, says:

«It is encouraging to see digital issues taking a prominent position in the new Commission. However, I cannot expect much from Commissioners Oettinger and Ansip, who will be in charge of internet policy. The future Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society, Günther Oettinger, hasn’t demonstrated any expertise in the area so far. It is unlikely that he can credibly fill in the footsteps of Neelie Kroes. In the Estonian commissioner Andrus Ansip, a strong advocate of the ACTA trade agreement has been named Vice President for the Digital Single Market. I will be asking probing questions of Oettinger and Ansip in the parliamentary hearings of the Commissioners.»

ACTA was rejected by the European Parliament in 2012 due to the threat it posed to fundamental rights on the internet. Shortly before, Ansip was still describing ACTA as an «extremely appropriate thing», while tens of thousands of people took to the streets worldwide to protest against the treaty.

Reda welcomes the fact that the copyright responbility was reassigned to the digital portfolio:

«A topic of such broad social prominence can no longer be viewed solely from a perspective of commercial interests. With 11,000 replies, the latest EU consultation on the matter saw record participation numbers.The Commission’s assessment of the replies clearly documents: Europeans recognize that the current legal situation hinders the advancement of the European information society. Even in times of rising Euroscepticism, copyright is an area in which they support harmonisation and pan-European reform.»

The outgoing commissioner Neelie Kroes, in charge of the digital agenda, recently spoke out lucidly in favor of a simplification of the copyright regime and described the EU legal framework as «fragmented, inflexible, and often irrelevant».

On the Commission’s restructuring presented by Juncker, Reda comments:

»Juncker’s apparent effort to form a truly political Commission is a good sign. Many of the new Commissioners previously held leading political positions in the member states. However, it is not enough to simply politicise the commission. A real European democracy requires a Commission that is transparent and open to Europeans’ participation, as well as not hiding behind an understanding of itself as purely administrative. This is the standard we Pirates will measure the commission against.«

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One comment

  1. 1
    Christian Huldt

    Keep up the good work! We all depend on you now ;-)

    member of the Swedish pirate party