For whatever it's worth

Tag archief: Digital Agenda

Neelie Kroes & “Wissen vor Acht”. Healthcare in your front pocket

Wissen vor Acht” -“Knowing before eight”- is a prime time TV program, viewed by millions of people, just before the eight p.m newsbroadcast of the public TV sender ARD in Germany. “Wissen vor Acht” brings during weekdays new scientific and digital developments under the attention of millions of viewers in Germany:  “Wie wird uns Technik künftig beeinflussen? ”Was ist Vision, was schon bald Realität?“  Broadcasts can be downloaded from the mediatheke of the ARD and published on YouTube.


Click here for the broadcast about the medicinal application of handkerchiefs.

And here is power politician, European Commissioner Neelie Kroes on YouTube promoting the latest digital developments  for the healthy benefits of European citizens. With a ‘Digital Agendahigh on the priority list of the EU. Reading from an auto-cue, technocratically summing up facts and impressive figures about existing digital markets and potential applications. Nevertheless, only 760 visitors at the time this post was published, while the machinery in the engineroom of the EU is kept on full steam.

The principle question is, however, do we need  liberal, market oriented European Commissioners, promoting the latest digital applications? Or should this be left to professional scientists and left to the press and public media? Should the European Commissioners, as politicians, not rather be concerned about the social consequences , since those applications can and will be used  to control the daily life of European citizens? Quod ed demonstrandum spying on social media, on email conversations and monitoring blog- and websites.

Frank Schirrmacher addressed this political topic in the Frankfurter Algemeine.  “Das Armband der Neelie Kroes“. Free translated:

Do we want a political policy, which simply read out instructions for use, or politics which are incorporated in democratic communication processes?

We are talking about control techniques, which organize social and economic activities, even replace them, limiting the debate to the scope of a ‘Digital Agenda’. Roughly the same way as one (politicians e.g.) would explain democracy by spelling out electoral programs of political parties.

Leaves a last question: “Where is the online public debate about this topic in the press and public media, free available, not hidden after paywalls, allowing moderately moderated comments by readers in the Netherlands?  As is possible in the FAZ, Der Spiegel, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Cicere Online, the Guardian, the New York Times, etc., etc.”

Perhaps the successor of European Commissioner Viviane Reding, who stopped subsidizing Presseurop, could have a look behind those paywalls.


Plaatje: Screensnit “Wissen vor Acht – Zukunft”