back to article US diplomat: If EU allows 'right to be forgotten' ... it might spark TRADE WAR

US diplomat warns of "trade war" if "right to be forgotten" proposals in Europe are followed through. The introduction of planned changes to EU data protection laws could herald a trans-Atlantic "trade war", a US diplomat has warned. John Rodgers, economic Officer in the US Foreign Service, said that "things could really …

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  1. dogged
    Black Helicopters

    Hmm.

    Who spends millions upon millions lobbying the US Government?

    Who wants ALL the data?

    Looks Googly to me.

    1. g e
      Holmes

      Re: Hmm.

      I think the SPQA (Senatus Populusque Americanus) wants it more for transaction tracking than Google wants it for mining, which hints at the fact they already do it either via requests or sneakiness. Can't see a trade war being threatened just cos of Google.

      Trade war could be worked. We could buy Russian Wheat, Polish horseburger (it seems we already do), Chinese/Japanese/Korean tech and they'd still want Jags, Mercs, Porsches, Audi, Ferraris, Range Rovers and Lambos and they'll pay a government-inflated price for them so they can still drive around in a flash EuroCar. It'd eventually serve to further isolate them from the rest of the world ultimately as alternate trade sources would likely be kept if they stopped cocking around at some point later. Wouldn't be to much of a stretch to imagine EU cosying up with China, Japan, SKorea, India and everyone just raising prices. Not that I wouldn't put the USA going to (actual) war with the-rest-of-the-world over a trade sulk, though, cos they weren't getting their way. There isn't anyone called Nero in the Whitehouse staff, is there?

      Oh, and the whole of EU could tax MS, Starbucks, Amazon, Apple, etc into receivership. Yeah it all sounds simplistic but if you really want a detailed economic breakdown then do it yerself ;o)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Hmm.

        Don't forget the rest of the BRICS .

        The USA is moving towards irrelevance, slowly, but it's happening and this is the usual protectionist reaction coming into play.

        PS our new Huawei kit is awesome...bye bye Cisco.

        http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/04/rise-of-bric-countries

      2. kb
        Unhappy

        Re: Hmm.

        I hate to break the news to ya but as someone in the states i can tell ya that corps and gov? Kinda the same thing now. Even if the rumors of NSA funding Google aren't true the fact is the feds can walk themselves into just about any corp office and help themselves and nobody will say or do squat, just look at how quickly the story of AT&T having a secret room for the NSA to help themselves to data fizzled.

        So I really hope you guys in the EU do pass something like this, as sadly we here in the states have pretty much ZERO say in our government anymore and if their was any doubt who is running the show the supreme court ruling money is speech cleared it right up.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hmm.

      Yup. More desperate sabre-rattling from China's shameless little crack whore.

      Go and bother someone else love.

      1. Shagbag
        Megaphone

        Fuck 'em

        The US Government wants to dictate our privacy laws? Tell 'em to go get fucked.

        1. Danny 5
          WTF?

          Re: Fuck 'em

          You took the words right out of my mouth. The EU actually wants to do something to enhance privacy and those gun toting rednecks are telling us we can't do that "or else" Are they out of their f-ing minds?

          I do understand why they object, as the US government knows more about me then the Dutch government and they don't want to give that up.

          1. Elmer Phud

            Re: Fuck 'em

            I like the way that ' right to privacy' is 'written in to our constitution' but doesn't apply to anyone else on the planet.

            No air flights without your entire lifestory.

            1. Vector
              WTF?

              @Elmer Phud Re: Fuck 'em

              Wadda ya mean "anyone else?" What he really effectively said was "oh sure, we gots privacy...our own special brand of privacy."

              We Yanks ain't got it any better than anyone else.

              How "right to privacy" fails to imply "right to data protection" is beyond me. Must be a lawyer thing...

            2. John II
              FAIL

              Re: Fuck 'em

              For the Record: There is NO explicit Right to Privacy in the US Constitution.

              1. Euripides Pants

                Re: Fuck 'em

                "For the Record: There is NO explicit Right to Privacy in the US Constitution."

                Tell that to the Supreme Court Justices who decided Roe vs. Wade. They divined a right to privacy in the due process clause of the 14th amendment. Not saying they're right, not saying they're wrong but there it is.

                1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Fuck 'em

          The US Government wants to dictate our privacy laws? Tell 'em to go get fucked.

          Agree 100%. I'm not normally one for vulgar language (even online), but in this case it's certainly worth the exception. Ab-so-lu-te-ly no frigging way.

        3. Irongut Silver badge

          Re: Fuck 'em

          We'll forget about our privacy laws the day they repeal their right to bear arms.

          (yeah never)

        4. JEDIDIAH
          Linux

          Re: Fuck 'em

          It's almost like the idea of national sovereignty doesn't matter until it's YOUR nations sovereignty.

        5. eulampios
          Thumb Up

          Re: Fuck 'em

          The US government actually needs to hear it more often in many other occasions. Not only US, pretty much any other government on planet Earth.

        6. Euripides Pants

          Re: Fuck 'em

          From: A US citizen

          To: The World

          Please accept our sincere apology for allowing this dimwit to speak. Our Chinese overlords would not allow us to get into a trade war with Europe as anything that could possibly leave us with less money to buy all the shiny-shiny stuff from China is against the rules.

    3. I think so I am?
      Meh

      Re: Hmm.

      Isnt a Googly a cricket thing?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hmm.

      As Europe is a much larger market than the USA, bring on your trade war. It will be another Vietnam....

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hmm.

      The EU has a ~ €2 Trillion larger economy than the USA. Dream on yanks....

      1. asdf
        Thumb Down

        Re: Hmm.

        >The EU has a ~ €2 Trillion larger economy than the USA. Dream on yanks....

        Yeah and we have seen how coordinated and tightly integrated the EU is economically. North America will stay a very important market and considering the US is built around consumption and most of the EU is built on exports, a trade war could still be very bad for both parties. Still this dude is just talking trash. Obama is already paranoid about having a Jimmy Carter type legacy and a trade war of any type would ensure that.

        1. asdf
          FAIL

          Re: Hmm.

          Still it sucks when you know your country's government is completely wrong on something and you can't change it. When both of your choices for leader of a nation are both total corporate whores there is no choice.

        2. Eddy Ito
          Pint

          Re: Hmm.

          Certainly a trade war is about the stupidest thing to threaten given the current global economy. This idiot may see the US as rebounding but his glasses are certainly a couple of shades too rosy but more likely it's just threats that our gubbermint may very will be stupid enough to make good on. I say, let 'em.

          "Obama is already paranoid about having a Jimmy Carter type legacy and a trade war of any type would ensure that."

          In all honesty Jimmy gets a bad rap but he actually signed a key piece of legislation that has probably created more jobs in the US than any other President since but he doesn't get enough credit for it. It was H.R.1337 of the 95th Congress and it eased the restrictions on the production of beer and wine in the home and ultimately opened the door for the craft brewing industry in the United States. Sure, it took time but would Jim Koch have been able to craft his Boston Lager and launch a company only six years later? So cheers to Billy Beer, nepotism and homebrew; Obama should dream of such a legacy.

        3. TheVogon
          Mushroom

          Re: Hmm.

          The USA is effectively bankrupt though. They can't go on consuming forever.

    6. eulampios

      Sorry for your data, dogged

      Dogged, do you still have anymore data left? Or is all stolen by Google?

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hmm.

      Most US Congressmen are bought and paid for by big business and anything that could be anti-big business will be attacked. They get about $174.000 per year and often spend a million or more to get elected.Do the math and you will see why there will be a trade war.

      1. TheVogon
        Mushroom

        Re: Hmm.

        it's "maths"

        1. Euripides Pants
          Headmaster

          Re: Hmm.

          No, itt's "math", an abbreviation of MATHematics. If you want to make a contraction, you need an apostrophe - math's

    8. Stuporhero

      Re: Hmm.

      I was just about to say "Take THAT Facebook!"

  2. foo_bar_baz

    US has data protection

    But only for US citizens. IIRC there was that bit where private companies handling foreigners' data on behalf of the US gov't were selling it on.

    1. Eddy Ito

      Re: US has data protection

      Actually we don't. It's more smoke / mirrors than real protection. The big fear this bureaucratic muck is worried about is that data has been so shabbily handled it would cost a fortune for companies to actually figure out who they sold, gave or otherwise handed off the data to. Oh, and they want to be able to go to companies like AT&T and say "give us all your data on X and don't worry about the illegality, here's your retroactive immunity card."

  3. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. Whitter
    Megaphone

    Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

    That is all.

    1. James Micallef Silver badge
      Devil

      Right to be forgottem by government?

      So this 'right to be forgotten' in the EU applies only to corporations, or also to government? Say I move from one EU country to another, can I ask my previous country to forget about me? No? Thought not

      1. EvilGav 1
        Thumb Down

        Re: Right to be forgottem by government?

        Right to be forgotten <> right to have all data held deleted.

        Financial institutions are required to keep records for 5 years minimum on transactions, this law wont change that.

        Driving convictions (UK) are kept on record even after "spent".

        There are others.

        What this will most likely do is allow an individual to have their personal data deleted by someone who has no need to keep it - say an airline after the flight has happened.

        It sounds more like a case of enshrining in law something that should have been possible anyway.

        1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

          Re: Right to be forgottem by government?

          "It sounds more like a case of enshrining in law something that should have been possible anyway."

          Which is at least the start.

    2. Don Jefe

      Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

      Dear Foreigners,

      Stop buying our products and you'll have nothing to worry about. Good luck with that.

      1. Spanners Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

        Dear USA

        Please let us know what you think you make that could not be made elsewhere - or already is.

        1. Bjorg
          Mushroom

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          @Spanners

          Food.

          Not that countries in the EU don't produce any (and I'm sure many would be fine), but there are countries in the EU that import food out of necessity and the US has the largest surplus in the world, so there's a scary example.

      2. Hollerith 1

        Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

        OK. I did a quick mental survey of what I own that comes from the USA and it turned out mostly to be software. And less and less of it as time passes. An interesting exercise. The 'fun' stuff, such as movies etc, I would not class as essentials. If I didn't have them, I'd still get along fine. So, yeah, it's possible to live a consumer life without the USA. Who knew.

        1. Rob
          Go

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          Lack of software and films would easily be plugged by EU's home grown industry and they can easily do a better job with films the UK has a proven track record in films already and software houses would spring up all over the place not just that wonky silicon roundabout.

        2. James Micallef Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          All of the stuff I have is MADE in China / Taiwan etc anyway. Some stuff designed in US (iPod), but mostly it's European brands anyway. As OP says it's mostly software and movies that come from there. Movies no problem there's a big and growing EU + international scene with extremely high production values, quality etc. Only main advantage of US films is they're in English... but then again British films >>> US films anyway.

          Software ditto though I suppose I could easily switch to Linux. All the embedded software in my kit is probably linux-based anyway. The real biggie is web-based services... Google / Bing search, Google maps, Google translate, Facebook etc... nothing essential and nothing that can't be replicated (albeit less polished / capable) although it would be annoying.

          Oh... and Android / iOS / Windows phone OS. I guess we can all switch to the new Blackberry :)

        3. skeptical i
          Coat

          C'mon, you know you can't live without our McGarbageburgers

          [* ducks *] [* runs *]

        4. DavCrav Silver badge

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          "OK. I did a quick mental survey of what I own that comes from the USA and it turned out mostly to be software"

          I just did a mental survey of what I own that comes from the USA and it's a pair of nail clippers, as far as I know.

        5. Eddy Ito

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          "So, yeah, it's possible to live a consumer life without the USA. Who knew."

          Hell, that's what I do and I live in the USA. No I don't count taxes as part of a consumer life because all I get from my tax dollars is idiots like this and I could easily, even preferably, live without that.

          That said, with the exception of meat even the food comes from Mexico or further south for half the year and when I lived up in the northern part of the US it was about nine months of imported veg. Frankly, it it weren't for the ag twins of subsidies and tariffs it would probably be cheaper to import most of our food including meat. After all, those are the only reasons why corn syrup is cheaper than sugar and also why Brazil has so much sugar which, IIRC, they turn into auto fuel. Then again, I'm fairly sure I'm not telling you folks in Europe anything new. One quick question, do your governments pay farmers to not grow produce that doesn't grow where the farm is to minimize surplus like our gubbermint does?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

            @Eddy Ito.

            Yes, our governments are very good at doing just that. In fact ours possibly extends to entire countries.

        6. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          Work - the database server we use, now owned by a German company, compiler - US based but Germans work on it as well.

          Home - some games, US based but multinational workers incluidng high up British employees.

          Not much really, I think I would miss Naughty Dog the most.

      3. James Anderson Silver badge

        Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

        I already did. As far as I know the only item I own which was made in the USA is the Intel chip inside the Chinese laptop I. Bought three years ago.

        You Americans make nothing the rest of the world wants.

        The core skill is branding and marketing third world manufactured goods. These would fall outside any trade embargo. Worse if the EU got really nasty it could just stop enforcing intellectual property rights for US based companies.

        1. Vic

          Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

          > if the EU got really nasty it could just stop enforcing intellectual property rights for US based companies

          ... Or buy everything from Antigua?

          Vic.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Dear USA: You make your laws; we'll make ours.

        Hey Don Jefe, let me know what it is and I'll try not to buy it in the future.

  5. I like noodles

    I suppose we should be happy big corp wants our data

    Because if nothing else, it means we have some wealth.

    There are people who they're not interested in at all, and I'm glad I'm not one of them.

    1. The FunkeyGibbon
      Terminator

      Re: I suppose we should be happy big corp wants our data

      I need your clothes, your boots and your motorcycle.

      My 'laws' say I can have them so please comply.

      1. I like noodles
        Facepalm

        Re: I suppose we should be happy big corp wants our data

        So you'd rather be one of the ones whose data they don't want? i.e. someone with absolutely nothing? Don't think so.

        I think you misunderstand me. I said we should be happy big corp wants our data.

        I never for a second said they should actually get it.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I suppose we should be happy big corp wants our data

      "Because if nothing else, it means we have some wealth.

      There are people who they're not interested in at all, and I'm glad I'm not one of them."

      What worth do you have? Not intellectual by the sounds of it.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. I like noodles

        Re: I suppose we should be happy big corp wants our data

        And to answer your question, apparently quite a bit to people who want to sell things.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    SO what?

    Let there be a trade war. WTF ? Whats the worst that might happen?

    Lets try this out and call USA's bluff.

    Big bully baring its muscles? This is our chance Europe.

    1. g e
      Go

      Re: SO what?

      IIRC they have a massive trade deficit which means they rely on rest-of-world for their shit more than themselves.

      Go for it.

      1. genghis_uk Bronze badge

        Re: SO what?

        Yup US trade deficit $41.55bn last November - and that was considered to be an improvement.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: SO what?

      given that Europe can't fight, cause it's got not guts (army, balls, etc), and can't compete in any other field, like... innovation, manufacturing... yeah, let's start a trade war, this is cheap and easy, and boosts our politicos votes.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: SO what?

      Let there be a trade war. WTF ? Whats the worst that might happen?

      Lets try this out and call USA's bluff.

      Big bully baring its muscles? This is our chance Europe.

      Absolutely correct. The ONLY way to deal with blackmail is to call on it.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: SO what?

      We won't get their expensive military kit and the bits for their ("our") nukes. We won't be able to buy Apple phones and HP laptops. We won't have to buy the output of Hollywood. We won't be able to sell them Mulberry bags, French films, Parmesan cheese, BMWs or champagne. They will go around flogging everybody half price Boeings to try to destroy Airbus. They will also try to bend the entire Middle East to their will to stop our supplies of oil and gas, but good luck with that.

      I haven't run my slide rule over this, but I suspect that a very powerful country dependent on imports might just have more to lose than a loose federation which borders on countries with vast natural resources that are in need of further development.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Thumb Up

        Re: Re: SO what?

        "They will go around flogging everybody half price Boeings..."

        The ones that are grounded? :)

      2. Florida1920
        Big Brother

        Re: SO what?

        No way Apple, HP et al are going to let the USG keep them from marketing anywhere they want. The stuff's made in Asia anyway. Remember how contraband found its way into Libya and Iraq during the Times of Embargo? What could happen is increased tariffs on goods made in Europe. Americans might then have to sell their souls to buy a Mercedes. As an American ex pat living in America, I'm not sure there are many unentailed souls left anyway.

    5. Slawek

      Re: SO what?

      I am afraid , this is a very childish talk. Fortunately, even your politicians are wiser.

  7. The FunkeyGibbon
    Black Helicopters

    Trade War?

    This assertion is made but forgive me for being thick, it's not actually explained how this might be the case. Will the US or US companies actually refuse to do business in the EU if they can't have the right to do as they please with your data? Seems far fetched.

    Microsoft have already admitted that the Patriot Act can be used to access your data on the 365 platform because they are an American company and the legislation says that it applies to them no matter where they operate. The same applies, presumably, to Amazon and Google too. So how does the right to be forgotten sit with the 'right' to 'do what we want to, where we want to, when we want to' in the Patriot Act?

    1. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

      Re: Trade War?

      "it applies to them no matter where they operate" - it depends on what they are doing.

      This is the US interpretation of a US law. In actual fact, if Microsoft operate on European soil, they are probably doing it through a European subsidiary, which is subject to the laws in the region they are operating.

      It has to be this way, otherwise all employees of US owned (I'm talking US holding companies owning the regional subsidiary) companies working on outsourced operations for, say, UK government agencies could be forced to divulge national secrets if asked by the US Department of Homeland Security.

      It's different for business transacted over the Internet, because it's much more difficult to enforce national boundaries.

      Where the issue is further clouded (pun intended) is if a non-US organisation stores data in a US owned storage cloud. I can envisage situations where US DHS could ask for the data to be migrated onto servers under US jurisdiction, and then they have the law behind them to get it disclosed!

      I think that Office365 is probably run by Microsoft US, and the servers are probably on US soil, so the statement about that is probably true. A reason to consider carefully how you use SAAS and cloud based storage.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Trade War?

        @Peter Gathercole - correct.

        I think that point has been made before.

        As soon as you have a US component in your business chain you have exposure under the various backdoors that anti-terror legislation has enabled (the so-called "emergency" powers that turned into "everyday" powers, as anyone with an above room temperature IQ would have predicted).

        The devil is in the detail - if your cloud has fuzzy edges like most cloud services do you are never quite sure if you're breaking EU law. The correct way of fixing that would be to have EU only data centres with no US association, but that would deprive those poor US companies of all that lovely revenue they appear to be getting by breaking the law.. Hell no, let's just impose our laws on others.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Trade War?

        As far as I know all our Azure services and Office 365 are hosted in Europe and therefore have to be compliant with EU law. I checked this point when I opened our Azure account.

        1. NumptyScrub

          Re: Trade War?

          quote: "As far as I know all our Azure services and Office 365 are hosted in Europe and therefore have to be compliant with EU law. I checked this point when I opened our Azure account."

          Ask them very carefully if there is the possibility that your data could end up on US servers as part of a distributed backup. ;)

          I friend of mine had to ask a similar question, in respect of providing services to local government where the UK required that data to be held on UK servers, and only on UK servers. MS confirmed that they could not guarantee that at that time (this was a while back mind, for BPOS).

          MS may be able to confirm they can do what you've asked for, however the shadow of "geographically disparate" DR backups (i.e. copied to US servers so the Patriot Act applies) may still loom over any cloud service from a company that operates in the US.

      3. JohnG Silver badge

        Re: Trade War?

        "A reason to consider carefully how you use SAAS and cloud based storage."

        Agreed. The lack of control and security for commercially sensitive data makes the use of such cloud services inadvisable for any company with US competitors.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Re: Trade War?

      > This assertion is made but forgive me for being thick, it's not actually explained how this might be the case.

      When I read the article, I was looking for some logical leap of faith as to why this legislation would cause some economic ripple effect which would trigger some kind of market catastrophe.

      And then it dawned on me: what they're actually saying is "we don't like this legislation, so we're going to shit on you as hard as possible."

      <sigh>

      The Merkins, they really don't change, do they?

    3. Chet Mannly

      Re: Trade War?

      "Microsoft have already admitted that the Patriot Act can be used to access your data on the 365 platform because they are an American company and the legislation says that it applies to them no matter where they operate."

      And that is more likely the reason the US is kicking up such a fuss.

      Imagine a US criminal moves to the EU then demands Google, Bing et al to delete all his data - suddenly US law enforcement don't have a shred of evidence...

      The war on terror would suddenly lose a lot of data for tracking people (a good or bad thing depending on your perspective)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Trade War?

        There will be the usual caveats with respect to someone under active criminal investigation, the EU Data Protection laws framework already provides for that. However, what it will not aim to support is the mass data grabbing the US likes to exercise (basically treating everyone as a criminal, even IF they prove their innocence).

        Screw that. I already have a FB project which feeds it BS to see what happens, and the results are interesting enough not to ever give it any valid data. Far too dangerous. If you care about your privacy, avoid both FB and anything more than search from Google, and use the latter via startpage.com and their ixquick link proxy.

  8. Crisp

    The USA is sabre rattling again

    Europe should not give in to the threats of rogue states.

    1. g e
      Coat

      Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

      I think the EU already refuses to deal with terrorist states, doesn't it?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

        No, they still have relations with Israel.

    2. 404

      Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

      Thought ya'll liked Obama? He's the one in charge, yes?

      You think you don't like it? We have to live here.

      o.O

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Meh

        Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

        " He's the one in charge, yes?"

        Anyone with a cursory knowledge of US politics knows the US president "leads" (at best) a "coalition of the willing."

        The "coalition" that passed the PATRIOT act, often without reading it (but fair play it was one of the biggest acts ever passed).

        The "coalition" that bailed out US banks to roughly 50 years of NASA's current budget in 1 year.

        The "coalition" that opened the best AQ recruiting office on the planet in Cuba.

        The rest of the time the President is more like "Cat hearder in chief."

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

          You forgot to add the Coalition with Dubya in charge when some of this happened so bugger all to do with Obama!

          1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Happy

            Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

            That was exactly my point.

            The "coalition of the willing" I had in mind was between the President, the Congress and the Senate.

            Obama OTOH is more in the role of "Cat hearder in chief."

      2. Vic

        Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

        > Thought ya'll liked Obama?

        Nope.

        We just prefer him to the other geezer...

        Vic.

      3. Stuporhero

        Re: The USA is sabre rattling again

        Then you have the power to make the change. History is littered with revolt.

  9. Sam Liddicott
    Thumb Down

    har har

    "We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to data protection,"

    no, it means warrant-less interception of emails and phone calls

    1. tkioz

      Re: har har

      Yep... gotta love how judges "interpret" plain English so that it doesn't do what a reasonable person thinks it would...

  10. This post has been deleted by its author

  11. pierce
    Devil

    just remember, you're not the customer, you're the product.

  12. sabba
    Big Brother

    Ok, ok, please no more anti-American corporate postings....

    ....I have used up my day's allotment of upvotes already and it's only 9.49am!!

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh, yeah?

    "We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to data protection"

    That's one opinion. And not a very convincing one either.

  14. TeeCee Gold badge
    Mushroom

    Yeah......right.......

    So in fact very similar to that Sarbanes-Oxley kneejerk bollocks which means that, because corporate America is as bent as a three-bob note, anyone anywhere in the world with a connection to the financial reporting side of a company with a US presence falls under its aegis.

    Sort that pile of horseshit out and we'll talk.

    While you're at it, you could think about amending that Constitution to recognise a few important things that have happened in the last 30 years or so. Ramming your head so far up your own arse that you can't see the problem isn't a long-term solution.

    We need a "Sod off you two-faced git" icon.

    1. Dapprman

      Re: Yeah......right.......

      You beat me to it. SoX - where only the auditors benefit.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yeah......right.......

      Sox prevented the financial crisis in 2008, didn't it?

  15. Captain TickTock
    Trollface

    Boot on the other foot

    EU Laws that the US would have to abide by...

  16. Wombling_Free
    Megaphone

    Would 6pm be a good kick-off time for you?

    Tough words, yankees.

    Come at us, we'll have you.

    1. 404
      Mushroom

      Laughs..

      The EU can't defend itself from itself... Every EU army/air force/navy you have cannot operate without American help, and you know it.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Laughs..

        "The EU can't defend itself from itself... Every EU army/air force/navy you have cannot operate without American help, and you know it."

        You sound like you believe the (usually bollox) fiction pumped out by hollywood.

        1. 404
          FAIL

          Re: Laughs..

          No, I read EU news daily - France needs American air tankers, British builds and mothballs carriers, EU builds jets that can't do their jobs,... name an EU country that can defend itself or it's interests.

          1. sabba
            Facepalm

            Re: Laughs..

            Given that a good percentage of the Yanks I have met get confused about the location of various countries I think we're fairly safe from an American invasion seeing as the buggers can get to out of space (I guess it is only straight up after all) but would have problems pinpointing Malawi on the map.

            And most of the shit that America relies on so heavily was invented in Europe in the first place.

            Yeah, good old US manufacturing. Tell me, had any problems with your aerospace or motor industries lately?

            I could go on but I'm getting bored.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Laughs..

            obvious troll is obvious

            1. 404
              Happy

              Re: Laughs..

              Correct - but I did get 26 downvotes thus far

              ;)

              Best part about this is that I agree that the US needs to mind it's own damn business - how about doing something with Biden while he's over there telling Cameron what to do - I hope Cameron sticks to his guns - as it were - does the Tower still accept guests?

              ;)

              1. Mycams
                Joke

                Re: Laughs..

                Ask nicely and I think the lady in charge could organise a haircut for him!

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Quick, about face!

                > Gets massively downvoted.

                > Pretends he was trolling all along.

                1. 404

                  Re: Quick, about face!

                  Negative. I actually watch my votes up/down carefully, you can say pretty much anything if you know the proper way to portray it. This took me a while to learn and I took great pride in doubling and tripling my up to downvote ratio.

                  Today? Really didn't just give a fsck. New Fed regulations are kicking my butt and I'm having a seriously bad month that's barely started.... so instead of using twitter for my political bitching, I took it out on El Reg.

                  For that I apologize.

                  Shake?

                  1. Eddy Ito

                    Re: Quick, about face!

                    "I took great pride in doubling and tripling my up to downvote ratio"

                    Pardon me for saying but, unless you're intending to go into politics, you need another hobby. If you like, I've got some nice beverage recipes to get you started. You can start with a pale ale and work up to coffee porter.

                    1. Swarthy
                      Happy

                      Re: A new hobby(@Eddy Ito, Was: Quick, about face!)

                      Ooh! I need a new hobby, and the coffee porter sounds like an excellent option. I'm not a fan of pale ales, but I would be very interested in your recipes.

          3. WatAWorld

            Sounds laughable

            The USA would have lost WWII, which it entered 3 years late purely to defend itself after being attacked at Pearl Harbor.

          4. Fibbles

            Re: 404

            You seem to be confusing the 'ability to defend itself' with having a large standing military that has to kick off wars on a regular basis in order to give itself something to do. After years of fighting poorly equipped middle-eastern states the US may have convinced itself, or at least its populace, that it can roll over any country it likes. However, much like the Russians, the EU is simply too big and too well armed a target for the US to take on alone.

            1. Eddy Ito

              Re: 404

              You're forgetting the stubborn streak that won't allow us to stop until we've reached a convincing draw or at least close enough to walk away, declare victory and leave a bloody mess behind. Fortunately it won't be anything for the pols to worry about since the school boards across the country will only buy educational materials that parrot the official line that we were fighting for democracy and triumphed over the oppressed oppressors of the downtrodden.

              1. Rattus Rattus

                @Eddy Ito

                How did that method work out in Vietnam?

          5. Stuporhero

            Re: Laughs..

            We'll see in Argentina won't we.

      2. 404
        Trollface

        Re: Laughs..

        Truth sucks, eh? Muaaaahahahahahahaha.

        ;)

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Laughs..

        "Operate" ... doing *what* exactly?

        I.M.O. it would be a perfect outcome if Europe had to abandon the Great American Quest of Bombing Rubble into Smaller Rubble in countries nobody cares about and who doesn't even appreciate the liberal application of gratis lessons in applied Freedom and Democracy!

        Without the US we could go back to the old, "keep it in the family"-ways, and maybe bomb Turkey a bit or run tanks across Belgium as tradition demands, that lot got it coming for decades already.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Laughs..

        There is an old saying:

        When the Germans fired, the English ducked.

        When the English fired, the Germans ducked.

        But when the Americans fired, everybody ducked....

        American soldiers are some of the worst trained and most gung ho on the planet. You won't be missed.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bwah bwah bwah ....

    The US *hates* it when other countries all gang up against it.

  18. robin penny
    Facepalm

    More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

    This sounds like a typical EU diktat, that increases beauracracy, puts up business costs. and makes Europe less competetive. Just what Europe needs right now! Shouldn't they be working at reducing beauracracy...

    I'm in favour of data protection but given the existing laws covering this area it beggars belief that they don't have other priorities at the moment. Very often these diktats don't deter the bad boys, but penalise those who may already be doing their reasonable best.

    P.S. I don't own a business myself.

    1. MrXavia
      Meh

      Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

      I can see issues with this, what about backups? if you make multiple daily tape backups, how do you erase one person from those?

      How can you keep proper business records if you delete details of who your customers were? I am sure the HMRC will love turning up and you saying 'sorry we are missing 20% of our records as they were requested to be deleted by our customers'

      1. P. Lee Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

        Tapes are cycled. The data will drop out eventually.

        HMRC doesn't need customer's personal details. Lots of companies don't keep customer records and may even outsource revenue collection (to a debt collector).

        I don't think anyone is talking about data required for ongoing customer interaction. We are talking, "delete all my data from facebook," and "I was an ann summers customer last year, but now I'm married and I'd like you to delete me from your system," sort of thing.

        This is perfectly reasonable - if you can't afford to manage data on people, you shouldn't be collecting it.

        1. Dazed and Confused
          Paris Hilton

          Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

          > We are talking, "delete all my data from facebook,"

          So how's this going to work then?

          The easy bit is deleting all the stuff you posted directly. But what about responses other people have made to your postings. Do you claim ownership of those, should deleting your profile also delete other peoples efforts?

          Now here I've quoted part of you posting. If you were to decide to have your postings deleted from El'Reg what would happen to my posting? Or any subsequent response built on that. Should it all be deleted? Who would get to decide what got deleted and what didn't? Could it be done programmatically or would a team of lawyers be needed to decide? Who's going to pay for the afore mentioned bottom feeders.

          The easy way for a site to handle the request would be for them to simple delete the whole topic.

          How long till people started to use this as a form of censorship?

          A company could find a thread on some discussion site rightly slagging off the pile of shite they call a product. So they get some shill to post something in the response. Wait for it to get flamed and then have the shill demand the right to be forgotten. Since their posting is now intimately entwined in the whole slag fest they'd find it easy to just delete everything. Pufff no more criticism of a their crap product.

          Is this what you are asking for.

          As to your point about "last year I was a customer of Anne Summers this year I don't want to be"

          Sure, you should be allowed to crossed off their mailing list. But say you bought some product from them of an intimate nature and then say someone were to find that some chemical used in curing the plastic is actually carcinogenic. If the shop had to delete all records of your ever having existed, then they'd be unable to inform you of a product recall. And how far would you want this to go. Say the shop where to be sold off. One of the things they would likely want to include in any prospectus would the number of customers they've had in the last year. They then publish this prospectus. You now ask to be forgotten, do they need to go and hunt down each copy of their bumph and subtract one from the total? If they don't then you've not been completely forgotten have you. You still exist within a total.

          1. Chet Mannly

            Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

            "Now here I've quoted part of you posting. If you were to decide to have your postings deleted from El'Reg what would happen to my posting?"

            Nothing - the comment doesn't identify anybody. Comments get removed/deleted all the time here - seriously no idea what you are making such a fuss about.

            "But say you bought some product from them of an intimate nature and then say someone were to find that some chemical used in curing the plastic is actually carcinogenic. If the shop had to delete all records of your ever having existed, then they'd be unable to inform you of a product recall."

            I've never been proactively contacted by a manufacturer or retailer about a recall - they have in-store advertising or public notices telling people to contact the manufacturer - I then supply my details if I want to participate in the recall.

            Besides - all they have to do is delete your name and personal details - tax laws in each country would assumedly dictate that de-personalised records of every transaction are still kept for a certain number of years.

            "You still exist within a total."

            But your privacy is protected as you are not personally identifiable, that's the whole point.

            1. Dazed and Confused

              Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

              You might never have been directly contacted by a manufacture about a product recall, but I have.

              Besides - all they have to do is delete your name and personal details - tax laws in each country would assumedly dictate that de-personalised records of every transaction are still kept for a certain number of years.

              Actually the tax records may well demand that the company keep personalised records of the customer. If you had medical reasons for buying intimate personal equipment you may well be entitled to buy it as medical equipment and as such be entitled to have it zero rated for VAT. The shop would then need to keep your details to cover themselves for not having charged you VAT on the purchase. Now I'm not sure whether Anne Summers is prepared to work in this way, but I've dealt with furniture shops where we've been able to get zero some things zero rated because there was a significant medical reason for needing to buy the goods. You have to supply personal details. The shop needs to be able to pass these on to the tax authorities.

      2. WatAWorld

        Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

        On a backup tape with 20 files, how do you erase a file in the middle?

        You copy tape to tape leaving the middle file out.

        The technical question is, when someone asks to be forgotten how much time does a company have to comply? How often must that batch clean-up process be run?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

      > P.S. I don't own a business myself.

      Most people who can't spell 'competitive' don't.

      1. JEDIDIAH
        Linux

        Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

        >> P.S. I don't own a business myself.

        >

        > Most people who can't spell 'competitive' don't.

        ...like you would know. What do you know of business or business owners. You're just a prole from the peanut gallery.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

      You are an idiot

      Nuff said.

      Go back to writing for the sun or the daily fail please.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: More EU beauracracy. Business costs up once again

      You do realise that living in a civilised society has costs, which is why Somalia doesn't have taxes and we do? Frankly, I'd rather live in a country that is less "competitive" but is nicer to live in. (I already do this to a certain extent by living in the South-west of the UK, where incomes are lower than in the South-east, but we have a much higher quality of life.)

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Without delay"

    Please don't make a rule that would force the companies to erase all data immediately. If my email gets hacked, I want to be able to recover my account after the hacker deleted everything.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Solution

    All EU subjects should immediately be swabbed, with their DNA profiles and known details archived for the benefit of the ages. Then inject them with DNA-enhancing chemicals (US patent 90210) so that their descendants may become more proper human beings in accordance with our lord Jesus Christ.

    Either that or finally admit that Ethel Warburton of Collet Close, Leeds, doesn't matter as far as the history of the human race is concerned, and if future historians won't give a shit about her unless she's found under a car park in Leicester, 500 years after some kind of big shit went on.

    Whatever.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Solution

      "in accordance with our lord Jesus Christ."

      Are you taking drugs?

      Immediately your views are invalid.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Solution

        Whooosh!

      2. WatAWorld

        Re: Solution

        It was sarcasm aimed at the tenancy of domineering Americans to use arguments based on some self-styled preacher's feeling of what god wants.

    2. MrZoolook
      Big Brother

      Re: Solution

      "THE" Ethel Warburton? For real!?

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This above all else

    Might explain Cameron's desperation to renegotiate Britain's position in Europe.

    Anon, and wearing my tin foil hat.

  22. Mephistro
    WTF?

    "We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to data protection,"

    That has the same logic as

    "We have a right to live in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to breathe"

    Fuck this 'diplomat'/thug, and whoever is holding his leash!

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A Letter From The EU

    Dear USA,

    Fuck off and mind your own business.

  24. JaitcH
    FAIL

    We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but ...

    Obamarama and the US Congress already think the hallowed Constitution is just a piece of a*sewipe as the governments, Republican and Democrat alike, happily ignore, or twist, the meaning of this piece of paper.

    'Due process of law' - yet they simply kill even their own citizens without trial; 'writ of habeas corpus', released from imprisonment after such arrest - go tell that to Guantanamo residents; 'secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures' - Patriot Act.

    Call their bluff, why should an entity with fewer people dictate to one with more people?

  25. tkioz
    FAIL

    America threatening "trade war" over a law a democratically elected body puts in place... yeah... that sounds like a country that is into "freedom"... bloody hypocrites.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Freedom for their own people

      Right to extort everyone else.

    2. WatAWorld
      Pint

      To an American a democratic government is a government that follows the will of "the people".

      "The people" being Americans.

      Tony Blair and his Labour government were an excellent example of a democratic government following the will of the people.

      1. Dazed and Confused

        @WatAWorld

        Tony Blair and his Labour government were an excellent example of a democratic government following the will of the people.

        Definition: will of the people

        What Tony will's the people to do

  26. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    Neologism proposal

    Next time some diplomat says something really daft we should call it "doing a John Rodgers" until he wishes he had the right to be forgotten.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Neologism proposal

      I actually like that idea, but I would like to observe that there is already a term "rodgering", which seems a pretty apt description of what this chap wants to do with the rights of EU citizens.

      If they're so fond of that their politicians can do that at home.

      No, wait, they already are..

  27. KirstarK

    I wonder if anyone in America read scifi or fantasy. They would know that any country that behaves as they do is the bad guys and will eventually fall.

  28. deadlockvictim Silver badge

    Hmmm

    U.S. Person» "We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to data protection," Rodgers said at a conference in Berlin, according to a report by German publication Heise Online.

    Is that the same as saying the people in The Land of The Free™ have the right in their constitution to bear arms, but this does not mean a fundamental right to own weaponry, or have I misunderstood the Second Amendment?

    I bet that the English are just waiting for the Americans to give up the guns so that they can invade again, amn't I right, Mr. Cameron?

  29. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Coat

    "A most intesting game Professor"

    The only winning move is not to play.

    You can guess what DVD's in my pocket.

  30. Andy The Hat Silver badge

    Interesting dichotomy ...

    HM Snoopers want tracking data stored for years by commercial organisations (ISPs), financial transaction records must be stored for years by companies, personel records often necessarily have historic content ... where does the 'right to forget' stop? Seems like it may end up as a 'right to be taken of a mailing list' which will mean the act gets through and the USA will still be our chums

    1. WatAWorld

      Re: Interesting dichotomy ...

      Yes, the right to be forgotten is a fight of the people against the snoopers that work for our own governments.

      The biggest threat to us is not some company using browsing habits to sell us chewing gum.

      The biggest threat to us is our own intelligence and law enforcement community shutting down political opinion by using emails and browsing habits to black mail elected and amateur politicians and commenters.

      1. JEDIDIAH
        Linux

        Re: Interesting dichotomy ...

        > The biggest threat to us is not some company using browsing habits to sell us chewing gum.

        No. That is the real threat. Who do you think the government uses to get it's information from? Most likely, it gets both tech and the actual information from some outside data aggregator that collects all of this cruft and slices and dices it for easy sale and consumption (to corps or government).

  31. Bent Outta Shape
    Joke

    If only he tweeted it...

    Go on, tweet "things could really explode" and see how long it is before you're extradited to the UK and prosecuted for a credible, menacing threat!

  32. FunkyEric
    Mushroom

    I wish

    That my ex-wife would forget me.........

  33. Electric Panda
    Joke

    I look forward to Europe being "liberated" some time soon. They'll bring "democracy" with them too :)

  34. adam payne

    "We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to data protection,"

    I'm sure it in the American Constitution but over here that means nothing. We have our laws and you have yours.

  35. RISC OS

    Fuck the states

    We should only give a shit about what america wants when america starts giving a shit about what we want... and amis can't understand why they are despised and why the world burns their flag

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Fuck the states

      Yes but Amis is a cock of the highest order!

      Makes Clarkson look cultured!

  36. Jim Carter
    Megaphone

    I think this sums it up quite nicely

    When it comes to the attitude of the US sticking their nose in where it isn't wanted:

    "Te futueo et caballum tuum".

    1. Irony Deficient

      ‘People called Americanes, they go the house’?

      Jim, I exaggerated in the title: other than the typo in the verb, it’s not a bad translation. The choice of caballus over equus was exactly right. I’d suggest the following variant for extra emphasis:

      Te futue ac istum caballum vectum!

      (This translation reflects the usual wording in these latitudes on this side of the Atlantic.)

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I want ..

    .. the full details on this guy. Everything. His shopping habits, where he lives, who he is married to, if he has kids (no, those details should remain protected - that would be unfair), how much he makes and just exactly where all his assets are and who paid for them.

    If this chap really thinks that Europeans don't have the right to their own laws I would consider it only correct to let him experience this for himself in full. After all, that's basically what he is advocating, no?

  38. WatAWorld
    Big Brother

    Now you see what we put up with in Canada

    Trade war real war, the US government never fails to take a "you're with us or against us" attitude at the drop of a hat.

    Give people one more human right than they have in the USA and it is like you've broken the 10 Commandments.

    The US government is just worried that people in other countries having reasonable rights will make the USA look terrible by comparison.

    They've seen what happened with healthcare, being #31 in the world in longevity, and they don't want any other gross and total embarrassments.

    1. Irony Deficient

      the southern (and western) peril

      WatAWorld, don’t sell yourself short: the USA actually came in at #40 for life expectancy at birth in the 2010 UN World Population Prospects. That puts our youngsters at about 2½ years less on average than those of Canada, at #11. But ours are only three months behind those of Denmark, at #38. Do you think that the Danish government should also be grossly and totally embarrassed?

      Given the track record of the US government, why on Turtle Island do you think that it would be worried about looking terrible in comparison to other countries? Whom would it be trying to impress?

  39. TheVogon

    I seem to remember that America seem to have trouble starting any wars without Britsh help. I cant recall anyone in the EU needing American help!

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      Isn't the whole point of the EU to ensure that we don't need help from Americans against the one country we traditionally needed it for, by having a decent framework for being on the same side as that particular country. No names mentioned, of course.

      I might have mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it...

      1. Grikath

        Historically speaking

        "Isn't the whole point of the EU to ensure that we don't need help from Americans against the one country we traditionally needed it for,"

        *Traditionally* ( within the last 300 years) that would be France kicking the bucket with their sabatons again, upsetting the rather..delicate.. balance of grudges and "remember what your Uncle charles said about our Auntie" tradition of the old elite at the time. Which incidentally also cause WW I, and in the aftermath, laid the foundation for WW II.

        The US , in sequence, was fighting its' war of independence, busy bashing each others' heads in over a little thing called "slavery" while commiting genocide on a continent-wide scale in the finest tradition of Western Civilisation, deeply offending the sensitivities of an ancient oriental nation with a *long* memory, only getting involved in WW I when it was proven the oceanic gap theory didn't work, only getting involved in WW II after said ancient oriental nation with a long memory decided to have a spot of revenge.

        Like the EU or not, it's given us a relatively quiet time considering the last couple of centuries.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Historically speaking

          You missed out annexing neighbours (Hawaii and Puerto Rico) and fostering pro-American states (Panama and Cuba)

    2. JEDIDIAH
      Linux

      Talk about short memories...

      > I cant recall anyone in the EU needing American help!

      Try the French RIGHT NOW for starters...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Talk about short memories...

        needing != accepting

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Talk about short memories...

        Yes, I tried and there has been zero military help from the USA to France.

        Perhaps you are confused that the USA offered to refuel French planes (offer not accepted, or required - Germany is doing it instead - http://www.thelocal.de/national/20130131-47671.html#.URFkU_dFBaQ ), and that the yanks are looking for a drone base in Africa (only of benefit to the Americans - France has plenty of Drones) ?

  40. Synja

    Isn't this just the EU overstepping its authority?

    For a transaction within the EU, it's great. Every country should have laws of this nature.

    If somebody in the EU goes to a US (or any other country) website/company and does any sort of business, why would the EU have *any* jurisdiction over that transaction except for import tariffs and customs in the case of a physical product? This is the same problem I have when the US decides it's going to dictate to the rest of the world.

    If I ran a US business that had EU customers, I'd simply tell the EU to kiss my ass if they attempted to claim any sort of jurisdiction over me. Same thing I'd tell the US if the positions were reversed.

    Now, if I opened an office in Paris and started doing the same business I would gladly submit to local laws and practices.

  41. clean_state
    Angel

    right to delete credit card details

    I would love to be able to tell businesses to delete my credi card details. Or even better, I would love them to be forbidden from storing them in the first place. You want my credit card ? I'll need an invoice first.

  42. Lars Silver badge
    Happy

    Calm down

    All of you.

  43. sisk
    Facepalm

    Dear US Government

    Kindly either remember who you're SUPPOSED to work for or just change the name to the Incorporated States of America and stop pretending to still be doing what you're supposed to. That way maybe we can wake up enough sheeple to get all your corrupt asses voted out of office and replaced with people who are not so easily bought.

    Icon is my first reaction to the headline, repeated a couple times as I read the article.

  44. Hans 1
    Coat

    Isn't it ironic, don't you think?

    There you have Cameron threatening to leave the ship and the average Brits here, I assume you guyz are mostly Brits, are all proud of European Union's Market muscle ... So, are you guyz leaving EU to end up skull ucked by US or are you staying in EU SuperWonderland? Would it not be easier for EU to show USians the middle finger with a proper central government?

    As long as you believe your politicians, you are getting nowhere ... all across Europe, local politicians are complaining about the loss of sovereignty EU has caused, when it is in fact just "them" who are losing the said sovereignty, the EU citizens elect their European parliament members to carry their ideas and policies ... EU citizens don't lose, its the local (as in country) politicians only ...

    BTW, the decline of the US superpower has already started... USians are not aware of it yet, though.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Isn't it ironic, don't you think?

      BTW, the decline of the US superpower has already started... USians are not aware of it yet, though.

      Some of us are....

    2. Northumbrian
      Flame

      Re: Isn't it ironic, don't you think?

      Not cross because EU sovereignty being threatened. Cross because US claiming jurisdiction it doesn't have.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You seem to be forgetting...

    The UK won't get the protection as Cameron and the Conservatives won't ratify it, they are prepared to leave the EU in order not to stifle their chums with having to respect our privacy. This probably means their US chums too.

    1. Stuporhero

      Re: You seem to be forgetting...

      If this doesn't go through I'll be first to protest it.

  46. jah627

    A plea from across the pond

    As an American, I can only hope that the EU stands its ground.

    It would be nice if my President would reward Mr. Rogers with a dismissal for his idiotic and threatening statement, but the odds of that are beyond remote. My government no longer responds to its citizens -- it has been taken over by fear-mongering warthogs and corporate thieves. I have this silly, quaint idea that my data belongs to me. Imagine!

  47. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Welcome to the New World Order Plans for Disorder with Sure Fire Recipes for Disaster

    How long does it take an ignorant population with a puppet government to realise that Western democracy is a corrupt sham and perverse scam and in a terminal state of rapid decline and capital collapse and now requires a whole plethora of distinctly fascist programs to save itself from the righteous primitive ire of the masses as they learn of the system's proposed fate for them from an increasingly better educated and informed network of spontaneous intelligence sharing.

    Are not the following two program distinctly fascist in nature ...... Hacker in chief: Obama given right to launch 'preemptive' cyberattacks and Senators ask Obama for legal basis for targeted killings of Americans ........ or do you believe you cannot believe such news and views because they are spun out on Russia Today?

    Or can you not think of the future and how you will make it be, the way that you want it to be? Do you not know the secret of how it is easily done with Critical Command and Strategic Control of IT and the Media ..... which has now moved HeadQuarters into Secured CyberSpace?

  48. Mike Moyle Silver badge
    Coat

    Trade war will never happen but, on the other hand...

    ... If it meant that I could stop paying hundreds every month for National Grid's (lack of) service here in the U.S., then, y'know... it might not be so bad!

    (Mine's the one with the gas bill that I've been afraid to open in the pocket -- We've had damn' few days in the past month that it ever got above freezing!)

  49. Christian Berger

    So how would a trade war work?

    Usually this works by having import taxes, making foreign products more expensive and therefore less attractive to the people in your country....

    Now, the US doesn't produce very much, but they import a lot from the EU. I work at a fairly humble 25 people company and even _we_ ship a good part of our goods to the US. (via Canada where we have an associate)

    And even worse, the US imports most of their machines used to produce stuff from the EU. So if they raise the tax on imports from the EU, their own products will become more expensive, making them less attractive.

    1. Irony Deficient

      Through the mercantile-industrial complex.

      Christian, those import taxes are typically called “retaliatory tariffs”, and (at least for WTO members) have to be approved by the WTO before they can be applied. Such tariffs are most often selectively* applied, to avoid all-out trade wars. For example, the US was approved to apply retaliatory tariffs against the EU in 1999 after ten years of an EU ban on importation of hormone-treated beef; the tariffs were selectively applied to French Roquefort cheese, Danish hams, and so on for each member state of the EU at the time, except for the UK. Similarly, in 2005 the EU, as well as Canada, Japan, and other countries, were approved to apply retaliatory tariffs against the US because of the 2000 “Byrd Amendment”, which directed countervailing duties on below-cost-of-production imports straight to domestic producers affected by those imports. The EU applied those retaliatory duties to farming equipment, textiles, paper, and so on; Canada applied them to cigarettes, live swine, oysters, &c.; Japan applied them (mainly) to steel; and on down the list.

      We actually do produce quite a bit; the thing is that we import a good deal more than we export.

      * — Often to maximize political discontent in key regions where the affected goods are produced.

  50. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Unhappy

    Bottom line. America recognizes pesonal data is *very* valuable commodity and does

    not want filthy yoooooropeans stopping them getting their hands on as much of it as possible and hanging onto it as long as possible (ideally forever).

    It's all about the Benjamins (unless it's about Israel, when it's been all about the ben ya min's).

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Bottom line. America recognizes pesonal data is *very* valuable commodity and does

      Quite so, John Smith 19, and may the best Secret Intelligence Service and Intellectual Property Owner and Internet Service Provider win win, with that being able to deliver all three together in a SMARTR Package guaranteed to be a runaway success.

  51. Someone Else Silver badge
    Flame

    John Rodgers is a self-important fat-ass

    "We have a right to privacy in our Constitution, but this does not mean a fundamental right to data protection," Rodgers said at a conference in Berlin [...]

    Boy, talk about splitting hairs that aren't really there. So a Constitutional right to privacy is being unilaterally qualified by some self-important mid-level bureaucrat to specifically exclude "data protection" (i.e. the right to the privacy of one's personal data). The possibilities for rejoinder are practically endless, but I'll open with this one: All these gun-huggers on this side of the pond are literally frothing at the mouth stating that their right to posses any form of ridiculous firearm cannot be limited in any way, shape, or size. So, Mr. Rodgers, is it your implication that certain Constitutional rights are "better" than other Constitutional rights? Can you show me in the Constitution you so smugly represent expertise in where it says that some rights granted by the constitution are absolute, and other are "soft", and where each right is falls in that table?

    Fucking wanker!

  52. asdf
    Trollface

    sigh

    Instead of race baiting El Reg likes to engage in flag baiting. This is some peon diplomat that spouted off and can be safely ignored. We just had a change at the top of our State Department so I find it hard to believe they are looking for trade war fight right now. Yes our government sucks but so does yours (doesn't matter the country virtually). The whole idea of a former colony dictating to its former master really strikes a nerve I guess (plus that jackass W Bush didn't help anything except making the USA irrelevant quicker).

  53. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    One sentence quote and it's 100% wrong...

    One sentence quote from this fine US'ian, and the entire sentence is wrong:

    1) The Consitution doesn't explicitly list a right to privacy. That is simply a human right.

    2) Yes, it does follow that since people have a right to privacy, they have rights regarding data about themselves.

  54. Idocrase

    America is late to every war it doesn't start, screws up royally throughout, then takes all the credit at the end. Good riddance as far as I'm concerned.

    Europe doesn't need America, despite Americas beliefs to the contrary.

    We don't need iPhones, Samsung make better phones. We don't NEED Microsoft, linux isn't hard to use. NO-ONE likes American cars except Richard Hammond and we can always dump him in the middle of Africa or somewhere when we need to. American inventions were actually invented by people from Europe, who usually got ripped off by that twat Edison (The Steve Jobs of his age). American attitudes to medicine are Victorian at best, businesses corrupt and aimed at making rich people richer and the poor into some kind of indentured servants, and we should really just deport every lawyer before the borders close, because we are fed up with American style litigation in our courts.

    The entirety of the USA could sink into the sea, and the only major complaint would be regarding the tidal wave of McDonalds wrappers and old AOL CD's left floating around.

    Europe in general, and the UK especially, has a brilliant film tradition, which might finally be able to truly flourish without the milky, watered down hollywood pap forcefed to cinema goers that spews from the sphincters of idiots like micheal bay.

    Oh and a few TV shows would vanish, but lets face it, there's never been a decent TV show from the US that hasn't been cancelled with a shitty ending, so who cares?

  55. dervheid

    love

    the general consensus;

    "Fuck you USA"

    The US scumvernment needs to realise that it is NOT in charge globally.

  56. Pete 8
    Go

    But it will work when

    ...the 'consenting' end user has full control over the encryption, then they can delete such trails or have it 'forgotten' at will.

    Kind restores some of the consent balance, where balance is overdue.

    Easy Piezy new competitive greener fields in which gruff goats graze and gaze.

    Dont you just L.O.V.E. IT, The Future!

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They wouldn't be spying if the banksters were arrested. All the spying is against the angry people they steal from. Spying itself is stealing.. Think about it for all the NSA spying, how many banksters were arrested. zero, so fighting terrorism isn't their goal.

    Now that they have stolen, they are attempting to disarm americans so they can't fight back, through the meat grinder is where americans are headed, that's their goal.

  58. Shannon Jacobs
    Holmes

    Doesn't go far enough

    The "right to be forgotten" is a step in the right direction, but it doesn't go far enough. Remember that "possession is nine points of the law", and that is why we need to possess our own personal data if privacy is to have any meaning. That wasn't a problem 50 years ago, when it was impossible to store that much data, but these days we really could know everything about any person.

    In case the threat isn't obvious, let me note that it isn't just your weaknesses and mistakes that can be used against you. Even your tastes and interests can be used to manipulate and even control you. Freedom is about meaningful and unconstrained choice, NOT beer.

    The default case should be for our personal data to be stored on our OWN equipment. If a company is involved, then they can sign it to prevent tampering, but when they want to access OUR personal data, they should say why, and we should have a right to say yea or nay. That request to use our personal data could probably be handled automatically in most cases by our personal privacy preferences, but when in doubt, the request should be escalated. After the data has been used, then of course it should be deleted.

    I think we have three choices now. One will be a total lack of privacy for anyone, which will be an interesting world, to say the least... The second will be strong privacy protections for everyone. Unfortunately, we seem to be following a third path, where rich people and big corporations want total access to our private data while concealing their own, and that can only lead to abuse and tyranny and less freedom.

  59. Local G
    Stop

    Our never ending recovery

    can't be put at risk by a trade war. We love money too much.

    Roger's threat is just a chip in the negotiation of the "right to be forgotten" agreement. Maybe the date for 'forgetting' the data will be pushed back. Something.

    The US will be in no trade wars any time soon. Bernanke will never permit it.

  60. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    Thank goodness you wise, solemn Europeans are here to take the moral high road and show the United States that jingoistic saber-rattling, irrational nationalism, and wildly unfounded prejudice against foreigners are unacceptable.

  61. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This isn't about Google, this is about shadow orgs like "Fair Isaac" which never ever delete any information about anyone, including Europeans (unless, of course, Brussels gets a clue and can reach across the pond and wring a few scrawny greedy overpaid necks).

    Then there are the big 3 reporting agencies who want a bigger toehold on the continent. They are constantly trying to find new ways to sell their credit reportage, first it was for loans, then as an indicator whether you are employable, next you'll see "pre-crime".... and being Americans, of course they pay off some Washington political flunkies to try to squash the money train in Europe (never pry the politicians out their cold dead hands in America, Americans are hopelessly ensnared in the vile tentacles of... well, you get my drift).

    Google is a docile pussycat by comparison, Brussels tweedies only going after the weak and those lacking in political grease....

  62. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Be careful what you wish for .... you just might get it when a few can do anything they like to do

    I want .... the full details on this guy. Everything. His shopping habits, where he lives, who he is married to, if he has kids (no, those details should remain protected - that would be unfair), how much he makes and just exactly where all his assets are and who paid for them.

    If this chap really thinks that Europeans don't have the right to their own laws I would consider it only correct to let him experience this for himself in full. After all, that's basically what he is advocating, no? ….. Anonymous Coward Posted Tuesday 5th February 2013 13:10 GMT

    That is a sort of mini, and therefore effectively not a very effective, Total Information Awareness program, which one might expect a less than competently led intelligence agency group [MI5/MI6/GCHQ] to supply to governments and civil and military services, AC, for their own attempts at a virtual remote physical control of ringed/ring fenced leaders and their followers/voters/backers/string pullers, rather than it and IT being a pioneering advanced intelligence expeditionary force providing all possible and probably future likely details, both fair and unfair, on governments and civil and military services leading personnel to an intelligence agency group [MI5/MI6/GCHQ] for their own attempts at a virtual remote physical control of ringed/ring fenced leaders and their followers/voters/backers/string pullers.

    Depending on how competent intelligence agency groups are being led, in order to provide prime independent novel lead rather than being as a puppet proxy that just executes anonymised third party orders issued to puppet proxy governments and their civil and military services, is that which more accurately determines whether just nations be great or plainly mediocre and in need of assistance and future intelligence feed seeding with …… well, ideally, and very easily in Great IntelAIgent Games in Realising Command and Remote Virtualised Control of Computers and Communications in Creative CyberSpace, Immaculate Sees and Definite Vision.

    How well do you imagine UKGBNI Intelligence Service providers are faring in the supply of a pioneering advanced intelligence expeditionary force servering a TIA programming project for New World Orders in a New Orderly World ARG ……. for New Life and a New Life and Lives in Love with Live Operational Virtual Environments in AI Control of Power and CHAOS in a Great IntelAIgent Game …….. Titanic Epic of Colossal Virtual Machine Programming? Or do you think, should you ever think on it, that Palace Barracks do nothing of major import and invisible export to generate future streams of revenue and industry, peace and prosperity, calm and contentment.

    cc Holywood and Hollywood, Cheltenham and Holyrood, the City and Westminster re getting your acts together for future control of reality via virtual means and alienating memes, or is that and IT to be solely a Private Pirate ProgramMING Operation with Mega Rogue and Renegade Partners? Be assured it matters not a jot to that and those exercising Master Pilot Controls.

    CodeXSSXXXX BetaTest of IntelAIgent Service Provision #1302050616

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Being careful what you wish for .... you just might get it when etc etc.

      And yes, you are not wrong, that is a direct challenging opportunity and cordial invitation to global intelligence agencies who would deem themselves worthy of being considered, in these new ages and spaces of shared intelligence co-operation, intelligent enough to demonstrate mutually beneficial lead in a failing state of anarchic affairs.

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Re: Being careful what you wish for .... you just might get it when etc etc.

        And a live HyperRadioProActive test of their current spooky snooping and informative intelligence analysis abilities/metadatabase facilities.

  63. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Bravo, El Reg ...... in Opening Up the Cans of Worms, Trojans and Moles

    Regarding ….

    Yes, the right to be forgotten is a fight of the people against the snoopers that work for our own governments.

    The biggest threat to us is not some company using browsing habits to sell us chewing gum.

    The biggest threat to us is our own intelligence and law enforcement community shutting down political opinion by using emails and browsing habits to black mail elected and amateur politicians and commenters. …. WataWorld Posted Tuesday 5th February 2013 13:38 GMT

    and
    > The biggest threat to us is not some company using browsing habits to sell us chewing gum.

    No. That is the real threat. Who do you think the government uses to get it's information from? Most likely, it gets both tech and the actual information from some outside data aggregator that collects all of this cruft and slices and dices it for easy sale and consumption (to corps or government). …. JEDIDIAH Posted Tuesday 5th February 2013 17:27 GMT

    Gentlemen/Ladies,

    That is sensitive compartmented information to be probably refused plausible deniability and Establishment comment upon for it is so easily proven to be perfectly true and their modus operandi/vivendi. Thanks for sharing it with everyone so that all may know more about how they are servered with that which is provided daily to be believed as being true and a mega media mogul hosted reality.

    Capiche, El Reg[ers]?

  64. Northumbrian
    Flame

    US Constitution

    "It's not in the US Constitution" - and that matters, why?

    Last I heard the US Constitution does not bind the citizens of the EU. Should someone tell the Yanks.

  65. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "We the Corporations of the United States..."

    Doesn't that sound more contemporary?

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