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[liberationtech] NYT: Obama’s German Storm

Paul Bernal (LAW) Paul.Bernal at
Tue Jun 18 02:48:07 PDT 2013

This all needs to be viewed in the context of complex and contentious internal wrangling within the EU over the data protection reform package. What the PRISM saga does is strengthen the hand of those within the EU advocating for a stronger new package, and less watering down. To an extent this is an internal battle - and the Eurocrats don't care as much what the US thinks. To me it's more 'Germany vs UK' than it is 'Germany vs US', if you see what I mean.

Ultimately they know that US businesses may well ignore large swathes of the new regulation, but they'll use that regulation for horse-trading, in the way they've done with European competition regulation for decades. 

It does, however, have a bit of symbolic significance, I think - and if businesses think 'privacy' might be a selling point, they might make some shifts. That matters more than the details of the law.

On 18 Jun 2013, at 10:39, "Eugen Leitl" <eugen at> wrote:

> On Mon, Jun 17, 2013 at 10:40:23PM +0200, fukami wrote:
>> Hi,
>> it's not the first time I hear or read this from Americans: Many people already gave up discussions about data protection a long time ago. So there seems a lot of hope that Europeans and especially the Germans with their learnings from history of surveillance and strong view on privacy can help fix "Americas lost balance". But to be true: I actually don't think that our stupid politicians are really the right people for this (and I also think that the US administration give a f*** what Europeans think or demand).
> You're falling for bad PR. Particularly Germany does not have
> full souvereignity, and it specifically shows in it being #6
> on the top telecommunication surveillance lists. Rest of the EU
> is not much different. De facto they're vassals to the US,
> as long the empire is still functional they'll remain that.
> Do not look that your politicians tell you (not that they
> represent you, anyway), and rather judge them by their actions.
> Look back into the past couple decades, there's your answer already.
> Notice this list is called liberation technology, not liberation
> politics. There's a probably reason for that.
>> Still, if the pressure will last longer than the usual couple of days, there is a real change to get some interesting regulations on EU level that could badly influence US internet businesses in Europe - for good in terms of better general data protection for all of us.
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