Google wins in ‘right to be forgotten’ fight with France

UNTV News   •   September 24, 2019   •   480

Google does not have to remove links to sensitive personal data globally, the European Union’s top court said on Tuesday (September 24) as it ruled on the fight between the U.S. tech giant and French privacy regulators.

France’s privacy watchdog CNIL in 2016 fined Google 100,000 euros for refusing to delist sensitive information from internet search results globally upon request in what is called the ‘right to be forgotten.’

The cases are C-507/17 Google and C-136/17 G.C. e.a.

The European Commission proposed in 2012 that people should have a “right to be forgotten” on the Internet. This was watered down by the European Parliament last year in favor of a “right to erasure” of specific information.

The issues of privacy and data protection in Europe have become all the more sensitive since a former U.S. intelligence contractor, Edward Snowden, leaked details last year of U.S. surveillance programs for monitoring vast quantities of emails and phone records worldwide. (REUTERS)

(Production Clement Rossignol, Christian Levaux)

Google temporarily shutting down all China offices – report

UNTV News   •   January 30, 2020

GOOGLE HEADQUARTERS IN BEIJING

Alphabet Inc’s Google is temporarily shutting down all its offices in China due to the outbreak of a new coronavirus in the country, technology website The Verge reported on Wednesday (Jan. 29).

The shutdown includes all offices in mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, according to the report.

The flu-like virus has killed over 130 people in China and has set-off alarm across the globe with companies closing stores, putting travel restrictions on employees and warning of a financial hit from slowing business in the world’s most populous country. (Reuters)

(Production by: Dan Fastenberg)

Eiffel Tower closed as France braces for major strikes

UNTV News   •   January 9, 2020

Paris – The Eiffel Tower will remain closed Thursday as France braces for a fourth consecutive day of major cross-sector strikes against pension reforms.

Teachers, health workers, lawyers and railway personnel are participating in a strike called by unions to demand the total withdrawal of a pensions reform bill which was announced in December.

Transport will continue to be affected by strike action with both the national railway network (SNCF) and the transport in the Paris region offering reduced services.

This will be the 36th day of strike action affecting the transport sector, the longest in history.

The SNCF expects traffic to be very disrupted with more than half of train services cut, as well as the Paris subway.

The French Civil Aviation Authority also warned of disruptions and delays and urged companies to cancel a third of their flights to or from Toulouse (southern France).

In Paris, the Eiffel Tower will be closed on Thursday, according to the company that manages the monument, as some of its workers have joined the strike.

From the first day of action on 5 December, when between 800,000 people (according to the Ministry of Interior) and 1.8 million workers (according to the unions) flooded the streets of France to demand the government to reverse a pension reform bill.

According to a survey published on Sunday by Le Journal du Dimanche, more than half of the population (55%) want the government to withdraw the reform.

However, rejection of the strikes has also grown, the effects of which can be seen in the rail and metropolitan transport sector of Paris.

Thursday’s industrial action is the first mobilization of the year and will serve as a test to verify the support behind the protests after strikes on 10 and 17 December failed to raise the same level of support as the first one.

Trade unions have called for “the withdrawal of the reform project and the opening of constructive negotiations to improve the current regime”.

But the clash over pension reforms has seen one of President Emmanuel Macron’s key policies to transform the labour market come under fire.

Macron has led on several labour reforms in an attempt to create a more flexible market reminiscent of Nordic models, but his move to streamline the complex pensions system under one points-based model has triggered the largest unrest of his presidency.

The largest union in the country, the reformist French Democratic Confederation of Labor (CFDT), has opposed setting the retirement age of 64 but has backed the move to create a universal system to replace the current one which has 42 different pension plans in place.

The Government is still negotiating with unions until the reform goes to the Council of Ministers on 24 January.

So far, some concessions have been made such as an earlier retirement for professions deemed dangerous, a revaluation of teachers’ salaries, a delay in the implementation of the plan in the railway sector and for the dancers of the Paris Opera, which since 5 December has been forced to cancel more than 60 representations. EFE-EPA

mdv/ch

Embassy cautions Filipinos in Paris against massive strikes, street crimes

Marje Pelayo   •   January 7, 2020

The Philippine Embassy in Paris has issued an advisory to warn Filipinos visiting and living in France particularly in the capital city.

Tensions continue as angry transport workers launch massive protests against the government crippling major transportation across Paris.

Announcements of massive strikes on January 9 and 10 have reached the Embassy thus it advised the Filipino community there to be aware of the situation and prepare for alternative means to go to work as travel disruptions are again expected.

If possible, avoid the areas where the rallies are being held, according to the Embassy.

Also, Filipinos are urged to monitor updates on the transport strikes through the Embassy’s official Facebook page (#PhinFrance).

Meanwhile, Embassy officials also expressed concern over the growing number of Filipinos being victimized by burglars and thieves particularly tourists.

Paris ranked 14th among the countries in the world with moderate to high index of crimes in the past three years, according to the 2019 Crime Rate Index published by research website Numbeo.com.

This has prompted the Embassy to remind Filipinos travelling and living particularly in the capital city to be extra vigilant and alert at all times.

The Philippine Embassy in Paris can be reached through its 24/7 hotline numbers +33620592515 or through its official social media accounts #PHinFrance.

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