The massive campaign to get Members of the European Parliament to sign Written Declaration 29 has continued this week in Strasbourg. There are posters everywhere in the Parliament building, roll-ups at strategic places, and assistants handing out flyers outside the plenary.
Written Declaration 29 calls for the extension of the Data Retention Directive 2006/24/EC to cover search engines as well. All your searches with Google and other search engines would be saved, for future reference by the police and/or others.
But the declaration is drafted in such a way that this is not at all obvious unless you read it very carefully, and look up the directive number to see what it is all about. The marketing material just talks about stopping child pornography and sexual harassment on the Internet, without going into any details.
In addition to the posters and flyers and roll-ups, all MEPs also got a letter from the author of the written declaration today. It was delivered both as a mail and physically on paper to the office of each of the 736 MEPs.
In the letter, the author of the declaration MEP Tiziano Motti for the first time mentions the Data Retention Directive by name, and not just by its number. But he claims that the call to extend the Data Retention Directive to search engines is just ”for the sake of avoiding technicalities”.
You can read the letter here.
Why is the campaign for this declaration so well organized and massive, compared to ordinary campaigns for written declarations here in the European Parliament?
I’m afraid I don’t have any answer to that question.
But I still urge all MEPs not to sign this declaration, or to withdraw their signatures if they have been misled into signing.
The Data Retention Directive is bad enough as it is, and quite possibly unconstitutional in several Member States. Extending it even further is not a good idea.
You can help by contacting MEPs from your country and warning them about the real contents of this declaration.
Also about WD29 (in Swedish): Henrik Alexandersson,