have to thank Leigh Phillips of EUObserver for this particular visceral visual image.
That is Neile Kroes, the Dutch EU Competition Commissioner talking about internet coverage in Europe.
"Can you imagine that there are still some 30% of Europeans who've never used the internet? Digital virgins, so to say. And like McLovin's Hawaiian driver's licence in Superbad, the commission will aid them in popping their digital cherry, so to say."Euuch!
Looking at her proposals in detail there a few things that surprise me,
To reach the Digital Agenda's objectives, we outline some 100 specific follow-up actions, including some 31 legislative proposals.Legislation to make people use cross border internet shopping? What happens if they like the corner shop? And with the EU's fixation with our internet data, do we really want them to have this amount of surveillance on our lives.
We intend to measure progress on achieving these objectives with specific targets. For example:
by 2013, broadband coverage for all EU citizens and, by 2020, fast broadband
coverage at 30 Mega Bytes per second for all EU citizens, with at least half European households subscribing to broadband access at 100 Mega Bytes per second
by 2015, 50 per cent of the EU population should be shopping online, with 20% of the population using cross-border online services
by 2015, regular internet use increased from 60 per cent to 75 per cent, and in the case of disadvantaged people from 41per cent to 60 per cent
by 2015, halve the proportion of people who have never used the internet (from 30 per cent to 15 per cent)
by 2015, 50 per cent of EU citizens should be using online public services, with more than half of them returning filled in forms via the internet
by 2020, doubling EU Member States' total annual public spending on ICT Research and Development to €11 billion.
He also tells me that she is a fan of Viz... Top Tips rather explains EU policy positions now, doesn't it?
Still the cherry popping is making me feel quite queasy for now, so I shall have to just stop thinking about it.