Europe needs to come together

I was just reading a news article about the (already ridiculous) ban of liquids on board aircrafts. Today that ban is five years old and the European Commission is now relaxing that ban. Say you fly from San Francisco to Belgium. If you’re like me and fly Star Alliance chances are that you fly to either Frankfurt or Munich first. With the current ban I could not buy any liquids in San Francisco because I would not be allowed to take it on the connecting flight to Belgium. By relaxing this ban this would now be possible.

That’s great, right? Well.. Yes… If it weren’t for the fact that some European countries have already decided to maintain the existing rules. If you have a connecting flight in France, the UK or yes… Belgium you won’t be allowed to take the liquids you bought abroad on board. If you fly to Germany or The Netherlands it won’t be a problem.

It saddens me that Europe can’t seem to agree on the simplest things and can’t seem to agree on one European wide set of rules.

Now let’s apply this to technology. Some of my US colleagues were actually surprised when they heard that Europe doesn’t have something like Netflix or Hulu. Heck… the majority of Europe doesn’t even have movie purchases/rentals on iTunes. Why is that? Simple… Because there is no one European copyright law. If someone like Netflix would like to start operations in Europe they’d have to negotiate copyrights in every single country. You already see this happening with Spotify for instance. Spotify is only available in 7 European countries. iTunes movies are only available in 2 or 3 countries. And we only have copyright laws to blame.

Europe needs to come together in order to not get left behind…

Update: And yes… (Thanks Cyril for reminding me) we’re not even talking about things like European roaming rates, VAT, etc…

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