Digital & Media Archives

  • The publishing industry [Archive]

    Languages & Culture 19-12-2005

    DG Information Society has made boosting the competitiveness of the European print industry a priority. To this end, the Commission held, in autumn 2005, a consultation to gather stakeholders' views on the policies needed for the industry. 

  • Computer patents [Archived]


    After the rejection, on 6 July 2005, by the Parliament of the draft directive on the patentability of computer-implemented inventions, often referred to as the 'software patents directive', industry and associations are discussing the consequences for Europe's patent regime and intellectual property rights (IPR) protection for computer programmes. 

  • 6th Research Framework Programme (FP6)

    Agrifood 26-05-2005

    The 6th Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (6th FP) is the EU's main instrument for funding research in Europe. Adopted on 3 June 2002 and implemented on 1 January 2003, the programme covers the period 2002-2006 with a total budget of 17.5 billion euro.

  • Information Society Technologies (IST): a user-friendly information society [Archived]


    The IST 2004 event took place from 15-17 November 2004 in The Hague (Netherlands) under the theme "People and the economy".  IST 2004 consisted of conferences and exhibitions and provided ICT professionals with networking opportunities.

  • eEurope – An Information Society for All


    eEurope was launched in December 1999 to ensure the EU fully benefits from the changes the Information Society is bringing. eEurope's key objectives are to bringing every citizen, home and school, every business and administration, into the digital age and online. It plans to create a digitally literate Europe, supported by an entrepreneurial culture ready to finance and develop new ideas. eEurope also wants to ensure the whole process is socially inclusive, builds consumer trust and contributes to social cohesion.

  • Privacy and data protection in the information society


    The Privacy and Electronic Communications Directive (2002/58/EC) was adopted in 2002 as a complement to the existing Framework Data Protection Directive (1997/66/EC). It regulates privacy and data protection issues as a result of new online marketing practices. One of the most controversial aspects of the directive was the introduction of an 'opt in' system requiring prior customer consent for unsolicited e-mails (spam). In November 2007, the Commission proposed to review the directive to take the latest technological developments into account.

  • eLearning


    The EU's eLearning initiative seeks to mobilise all actors to speed up changes in the education and training systems for EU's move to a knowledge-based society.

  • E-Commerce Directive

    Brexit 24-11-2003

    The EU adopted in June 2000 Directive 2000/31/EC
    (the 'E-Commerce directive') requiring its Member States to
    harmonise certain aspects of their laws on buying and selling
    online. The directive is designed to reduce the regulatory
    burdens for businesses wanting to enter this market (such as
    the adoption of the 'country of origin principle' and the
    prohibition of prior authorisations). It also includes measures
    to encourage consumer confidence.

  • 3G – Third Generation Mobile Communications


    The introduction and roll-out of third-generation mobile communications in Europe is being hampered by different factors: the economic slowdown, the financial problems of the mobile telecoms sector which is burdened with extremely heavy licencing and infrastructure costs, and the lack of 3G devices and services. The EU is trying to create a stable regulatory environment for a harmonised introduction of these new mobile systems.

  • Wireless Internet (Wi-Fi)


    The EU aims to promote the Information Society
    by developing multiple broadband access platforms, and the
    Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs, also known as Wireless
    Fidelity, or Wi-Fi) appear to provide plausible solutions that
    are relatively cheaper and faster than Third Generation (3G)
    mobile technologies.

  • Cybercrime [Archived]


    Concerns about security of electronic networks and information systems have been growing along with the rapid increase in the number of network users and the value of their transactions. The EU has put forward proposals to deal with increasing forms of cybercrime.

  • Local loop unbundling [Archived]


    Local loop unbundling deals with the access to the cable from the local telephone exchange to the premises of the customer (also called "the last mile"). It is one of the most contentious issues in telecoms regulation as it deals with competition aspects. Under Regulation EC/2887/2000, incumbent telephone operators have to give access to this local loop to new market entrants.

  • Convergence [Archived]


    Traditionally, telecommunications, media and information technology were operated on different networks, used different "platforms" and fell under quite different legal regimes. The economic and technical convergence of electronic communications poses serious challenges to EU lawmakers.

  • eContent and Languages Programme [Archived]

    Languages & Culture 01-04-2001

    Content (in a language they understand) is what makes people want to use the Internet. One of the actions therefore within the eEurope programme is the launch of the eContent programme to support the production and dissemination of European digital content. Building upon the successes of the INFO2000 and MLIS (Multilingual Information Society) programmes which terminated in 1999, the Commission proposed the eContent Programme ("Multiannual Community programme to stimulate the development and use of European digital content on the global networks and to promote the linguistic diversity in the Information Society"). The eContent programme was adopted by the Council on 22 December 2000.