04.30.09

The Illusion of Transparency at the European Parliament/Commission (on Microsoft)

Posted in Antitrust, Europe, Microsoft at 4:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Money for mortgage

Summary: How does it feel to be left out of the public arena while Microsoft perverts it?

ACCORDING to The Register, after long and repeated procrastination Microsoft has finally responded to antitrust charges. For background:

The original complaint was made by Norwegian browser maker Opera. It accused Microsoft of leveraging its desktop monopoly to distribute the browser and of ignoring web standards. Because of its large market share web developers were encouraged to optimise their sites for IE – to the disadvantage of other browser makers which did follow web standards.

In another news report, it is made publicly known right now that transparency in the EU is seriously deficient. It’s specifically about access to documents.

Being refused access to documents was “by far” the most common allegation made by citizens to the EU Ombudsman last year, revealed a report presented yesterday (27 April).

We have personal and very bitter experience with that, so we’ll present the latest from last week. For the first part of the story, see this long post. It’s about Microsoft attacking Free open source software through European panels. We are still waiting for the Commission to mail us the documents we asked for. It’s taking weeks if not months already and it’s a violation of the regulations.

OpenPGP: *Parts of the message have NOT been signed or encrypted*

Dear Mr Schestowitz,

We acknowledge receipt of your message.

Yours sincerely,

[anon]

—–Original Message—–
From: Roy Schestowitz
Sent: Wednesday, April 15, 2009 5:47 PM
To [anon]
Cc: s at schestowitz.com; [anon] (INFSO); [anon] (INFSO)
Subject: Re: Gestdem 2009/1562 FW: Document access application purpusant to Article 6 EC/1049/2001 (A/617056)

********* *BEGIN ENCRYPTED or SIGNED PART* *********

“Draft input to all WG prepared by the Commission” means the documents
the chairs of the working groups or participants received from the
Commission to guide the work in a particular group.


Roy S. Schestowitz
http://Schestowitz.com | GNU/Linux | PGP-Key: 0x74572E8E
Freelance journalist at http://itmanagement.earthweb.com/

Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

OpenPGP: *Parts of the message have NOT been signed or encrypted*

Dear Mr. Schestowitz,

Thank you for your e-mail of the 20th of March registered on 23rd of March applying for a copy of documents in accordance with Regulation (EC) N° 1049/2001 regarding public access to European Parliament, Council and Commission documents.

Your application will be dealt with within the prescribed delays. You have requested access to the documents as follows:

“I hereby request electronic access to all documents related to the Towards the European Software Strategy process in the posession of the EU-Commission, in particular access to the following documents:
* the list of participants in the industry expert group
* the list of WGs, WGs sleaders and observing Commission officials
* draft contributions of all industry Working groups on a the European Software Strategy
* draft input to all WG prepared by the Commission
* the participant list of the related meeting on January 20th in Brussels
* all submissions from industry to the ESS consultation under the applicable provisions of regulation 1049/2001 which grant me a right of access to all documents mentioned above.”

However, we are unable to identify the documents refereed to in the fourth item “draft input to all WG prepared by the Commission” and the sixth item “all submissions from industry to the ESS consultation”. Please could you clarify your request so that we may continue to process it.

Yours sincerely,

[anon]

—–Original Message—–
From: [anon]
Sent: Tuesday, March 24, 2009 9:27 AM
To INFSO /D
Subject: Gestdem 2009/1562 FW: Document access application purpusant to Article 6 EC/1049/2001

Bonjour,

En tant que correspondant du réseau accès aux documents, je me permets de vous adresser la demande ci-dessous relative à l’accès au document suivant: “GESTDEM 2009/1562″ all documents related to the Towards the European Software Strategy

Cette demande est introduite dans le cadre du règlement 1049/2001 qui impose un délai impératif de réponse endéans les 15 jours ouvrables soit le 20/04/2009.

Elle a été enregistrée dans ADONIS sous le N° A/09/612974. Je vous saurais gré, par conséquent, de bien vouloir préparer un projet de réponse conformément aux procédures décrites dans le guide ci-dessous, et de l’enregistrer dans ADONIS en lien avec la fiche arrivée ainsi que de faire parvenir une copie du projet de réponse signé à la boîte fonctionnelle INFSO ADONIS

Pour de plus amples détails, vous pouvez consulter notre site reprenant le guide pour le personnel, à l’adresse: http://intra.infso.cec.eu.int/S1/dm_new/docs/special_issues/accesdoc/house_rules_dginfso_04_08.pdf

Je reste à votre entière disposition pour toute information complémentaire.

Bien à vous.

[anon]

—–Original Message—–
From: [anon] (INFSO)
Sent: Monday, March 23, 2009 5:19 PM
To: INFSO ADONIS
Subject: FW: Document access application purpusant to Article 6 EC/1049/2001

Please registrer in GESTDEM.

[anon]

—–Original Message—–
From: Roy Schestowitz
Sent: Friday, March 20, 2009 5:15 PM
To [anon] (INFSO)
Subject: Document access application purpusant to Article 6 EC/1049/2001

********* *BEGIN ENCRYPTED or SIGNED PART* *********

As a reply, please answer the following

1. If you intent that

> > The document you are referring to is not a European Commission document, but a document that are made by Zuck and many others from industry.

is a negative reply upon my 1049/2001 request of access to the document
please consider the specific provisions of the regulation that guide
your obligation in the formal processing of an application under
1049/2001. For instance you have the formal obligation to “inform the
applicant of his or her right to make a confirmatory application in
accordance with paragraph 2 of this Article.” and the statement above is
not in line with the formalities under 1049/2001.

If your statement was such a negative official reply, please regard this
mail as a request for a confirmatory application under 1049/2001 for
access to European Software Strategy documents. The origination of the
document is irrelevant. You have to state reasons for access refusal. I
inform you about the substance of Art 4.4 “As regards third-party
documents, the institution shall consult the third party with a view to
assessing whether an exception in paragraph 1 or 2 is applicable, unless
it is clear that the document shall or shall not be disclosed.”

If you regard it as just an informal preliminary communication please
just process the following clarified primary application.

2. I hereby request electronic access to all documents related to the
Towards the European Software Strategy process in the possession of the
EU-Commission, in particular access to the following documents:
* the list of participants in the industry expert group
* the list of WGs, WGs leaders and observing Commission officials
* draft contributions of all industry Working groups on a the European
Software Strategy
* draft input to all WG prepared by the Commission
* the participant list of the related meeting on January 20^th in Brussels
* all submissions from industry to the ESS consultation under the
applicable provisions of regulation 1049/2001 which grant me a right of
access to all documents mentioned above.”

I appreciate your kind assistance. If you feel that you are unable to
process my request yourself it is your obligation to forward it to the
competent person in the Commission.

********** *END ENCRYPTED or SIGNED PART* **********

Still waiting. It has been over a month and it has been very time consuming. Why can’t the document just be handed over immediately?

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A Single Comment

  1. The Mad Hatter said,

    April 30, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    Gravatar

    Roy,

    Don’t be silly. You know it’s “Government by the Corporation, for the Corporation.” The peons who think they are citizens don’t count.

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