Europeans: Write to your MEPs about telecoms amendment and protect yourself from surveillance and seizure

Glyn sez,
This Wednesday, MEPs will vote on the Telecoms package. Two amendments have been tabled which in particular will ensure the new telecoms regulations protect European citizens from unreasonable surveillance and censure. If you have half an hour why not write to to your MEPs and ask them to support these amendments?

Amendment 133 is an anti-filtering amendment, and will add the following text to the Directive: "Member States shall ensure that no technology may be mandated by competent authorities which would facilitate surveillance of internet users, such as technologies that mirror or monitor the user's actions and/or interfere with operations of the user's network activity for the benefit of a third party (known as 'filtering')."

Amendment 138 ensures that sanctions cannot be imposed on end-users without judicial oversight. It will add the following text to the Directive: "applying the principle that no restriction may be imposed on the rights and freedoms of end-users, notably in accordance with Article 11 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union on freedom of expression and information, without a prior ruling by the judicial authorities, except where dictated by force majeure or by the requirements of preserving network integrity and security, and subject to national provisions of criminal law imposed for reasons of public policy, public security or public morality."

To do this weekend: ask your MEPs to vote for Telecom package amendments 133 and 138 (Thanks, Glyn!)


  1. How about a tag indicating who’s country and politics you’re currently praising, bashing, and otherwise pushing the copyfight? For example “ATTENTION EUROPEANS!” or “ATTENTION CITIZENS OF THE USA!” or “ATTENTION CANADIANS!”

  2. Wrote to my MEP to discover that he is one of the strongest defenders of free software and Internet freedom in the EP. Brightened my day in no small amount.

    Rock on, Mr Moscovici !

  3. I wrote to my MEP’s (website didn’t make it entirely clear which one was mine, so I e-mailed quite a few… can’t hurt) and the first reply I got was from the UK Independance party (UKIP). Quite a nice e-mail, full of talk about the evils of the EU and ‘fearsome autocracies’, specifying how it was UKIP’s ‘beholden duty to oppose EU legislation’. Rest assured that UKIP MEP Nigel Farage is taking time out from frothing at the mouth to support this. Good lad.

  4. As a footnote to this, there were protests made this summer to MEPs by many (including myself) about some amendments that had slipped into a previous draft of the “telecomms package” bill. Those amends were very poorly worded and could have given ISPs idiotically ridiculous powers of surveillance over their customers. The MEPs concerned both told me they had not intended the wording to be interpreted like that, and I think these new amends are designed to rectify the situation. If so, then then this at least goes to show that organised pressure can make a difference to the way the European parliament operates. Still makes you want to spit though.

  5. That site works fine and well for UK residents, but I live in The Netherlands, and I haven’t got a clue which MEP to write to.
    That’s the problem with EU politics IMO, so terribly opaque, that it is nearly impossible for EU citizens to keep an eye on their elected leaders.
    And local media do a lousy job keeping the public informed.
    It should not be bOINGbOING to warn us about these things.

  6. @jugglepunk

    Could be worse; one of my MEPs is the perma-tanned racist goon himself, Robert Kilroy-Silk. I got a stock reply back from him that he doesn’t vote for EU legislation of any kind. Marvellous philosophy for an MEP, n’est-ce pas?

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