Glyn Moody writes: The main claims about likely economic gains from concluding the US-EU trade agreement TAFTA/TTIP, billed as a "once-in-a-generation prize", are increasingly under attack. BEUC, representing 41 consumer organizations from 31 European countries, has written a letter to the EU Trade Commissioner responsible for the negotiations, Karel De Gucht, complaining about his "exaggeration of the effects of the TTIP", and "use of unsubstantiated figures regarding the job creation potential". In a blog post entitled "Why Is It So Acceptable to Lie to Promote Trade Deals?", Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, has even harsher words: "Implying that a deal that raises GDP by 0.4 or 0.5 percent 13 years out means 'job-creating opportunities for workers on both continents' is just dishonest. The increment to annual growth is on the order of 0.03 percentage points. Good luck finding that in the data." If the best-case outcome is just 0.03% extra growth per year, is TAFTA/TTIP worth the massive upheavals it will require to both US and EU regulatory systems to achieve that?
Glyn Moody writes: "We live in an age of unparalleled online creativity. Most of that user-generated content (UGC) is being produced by young-ish people: the last thing they want to think about is their own mortality. But here's the problem: that means few are thinking about what happens to all their content when they die. Who's going to look after it? Your heirs? Companies offering "digital eternity"? National repositories? Or will the risk of storing "infringing" material — and the threat of crippling lawsuits — ensure that no one dares do anything, and we lose most of this unparalleled global explosion of human creativity for ever?" Link to Original Source
Glyn Moody writes: "According to this story about Google's attempts to launch its own music service, "the search giant is “disgusted” with the labels, so much so that they are seriously considering following Amazon’s lead and launching their music could service without label licenses." So here's a simple solution: Google should just buy the major record labels — all of them. It could afford them — people tend to forget that the music industry is actually relatively small in economic terms, but wields a disproportionate influence with policy makers. Buying them would solve that problem too." Link to Original Source