Developers Alliance Letter to Members of the European Parliament ahead of LIBE Committee vote

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Contact: Michela Palladino - Michela@DevAlliance.org

Developers Alliance Letter to Members of the European Parliament on the ePrivacy Regulation

BRUSSELS - This morning, the Developers Alliance issued the following letter to relevant Members of the European Parliament:

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Dear Members of the European Parliament,

We are writing to you today as we are seriously concerned about the current direction of the discussion on the ePrivacy Regulation Proposal in the European Parliament. We are also worried about the speed at which the European Parliament has been trying to close this file, and fear that this haste is leading to a damaging outcome.

As it stands now, the text risks to seriously disrupt small businesses and software developers’ business models and market choices.

For this reason, we call on you to vote against the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) Committee report on the proposed ePrivacy Regulation

We invite you to take all the necessary time to re-evaluate the dossier and realize that a more sustainable solution is possible. Such solution would take into account the practical implication both for businesses and consumers of the current text and would be aligned with the General Data Protection Regulation and the European Electronic Communications Code.

We are open to continuing the discussion with all involved parties in order to find a solution that supports digital innovation in Europe and creates a workable environment, based on consumers’ trust in the communications services they use.

The Developers Alliance joined other industry groups in an open letter to Members of Parliament on ePrivacy

Contact: Michela Palladino - michela@developersalliance.org

Open Letter to Members of the European Parliament on the ePrivacy Regulation

BRUSSELS - The Developers Alliance in partnership with AmChamEU, BitKom, CCIA, DIGITALEUROPE, EACA, eCommerce Europe, EDiMA, EFPIA, EMOTA, EPC, EuroISPA, FEDMAFENCA, IAB Europe, ISFE, JBCE, TABC issued the following letter to relevant Members of the European Parliament:

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Dear Member of the European Parliament,    
    
The undersigned organisations, representing a wide range of sectors  impacted by the ePrivacy Regulation, are deeply concerned  about the current  process  and  direction of the discussion on the ePrivacy Regulation  proposal in the European Parliament.  Our associations have been providing constructive feedback throughout the process.  Our aim is to ensure that users’ communications remain confidential and their data protected with an aim to find workable solutions to achieve this while keeping the legal flexibility to allow for future consumers to enjoy the next wave of exciting and innovative digital products and media to emerge in Europe.  A lot of hard work has been dedicated to the dossier in the European Parliament so far and many proposed amendments rightly support the essential objectives of this reform:    
    
• Ensure real and meaningful alignment with the General Data Protection Regulation and the European Electronic Communications Code;   

• Introduce much needed flexibility so that innovation in digital services and products can continue to flourish in Europe, without compromising fundamental rights and freedoms of users.
 
However we regret to see that almost none of these amendments are reflected in what seems to become the European Parliament’s position.        
    
We seek the support of Members of the European Parliament to ensure that the views of so many of its members are taken into account on important matters such as the notions of “legitimate interest” and “further processing”.  We strongly urge Members of the European Parliament to carefully consider the practical   implications both for businesses and consumers of the proposed ePrivacy Regulation text before a vote. We look forward to continuous exchange with the legislators to find meaningful, workable and practical solutions that would ensure the high level of legal protection of Europeans’ fundamental rights and freedoms as well as access to the best of the digital technology revolution.
    

Developers Alliance Announces New Leadership and Expanded Mission

Contact: Chris Grimm – cgrimm@appdevelopersalliance.org
 

Developers Alliance Announces New Leadership and Expanded Mission
Bruce Gustafson Named New CEO, Will Focus on Representing All Software Developers

Washington, D.C. – The Developers Alliance (formerly Application Developers Alliance) today announced that Co-Founder, President and CEO Jake Ward is stepping down and handing the reins to Bruce Gustafson, a Senior Policy Advisor to the Alliance and former head of the Washington D.C. office of Ericsson, an international communications technology company. 

“It has been my pleasure to be with the Alliance since its founding in 2012 and to work with hundreds of innovative companies and tens of thousands of talented developers to give voice to the industry,” said Ward. “My pride for the work we have done is exceeded only by my excitement for the future of the Alliance, and I can think of no one better suited to lead us into the next phase of growth and success.”

Incoming President and CEO Bruce Gustafson has extensive experience in the technology sector, both in communications and public policy. Gustafson spent more than 20 years at Nortel Networks and more than five years at Ericsson, where he served as the North America Head of Brand and Internal Communications and then as the Vice President of Government and Industry Affairs.   

“It is my honor to accept the position of President and CEO of the Developers Alliance from my friend and colleague Jake Ward,” Gustafson added.  “Software has come a long way; from programs on computers to apps on mobile phones to a world with numerous interconnected devices. Our daily interaction with software is increasingly continuous, contextually optimized, and distributed across a wide array of devices, improving the way we live, work and play. Software is powering the world and it is our job to support that growth and advocate on behalf of the developer workforce and companies that depend on them.” 

Alliance Board of Directors Vice Chair, Josh Hartwell said "As an original board member of the Developers Alliance, I couldn’t be more excited to see an individual with such impeccable credentials continuing and expanding the critical work of advocating for all developers.”

“I’ve been privileged to work with Bruce for the past year or so on a range of policy issues. He has a wealth of knowledge on myriad policy issues and topics, and a keen sense of how best to represent our diverse and passionate membership,” said Board Member and Innovators Policy Council Chairman, Ayinde Alakoye. “We have accomplished much, but there is much left to do.”

“I’m excited about the future developers are helping to create for all of us,” added Gustafson. “There’s nowhere I’d rather be than leading the charge for them in Washington and Brussels.”

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The Developers Alliance is the world’s leading advocate for software developers and the companies invested in their success. Alliance members include industry leaders in consumer, enterprise, industrial, and emerging software development, and a global network of more than 70,000 developers.
 

Developers Alliance Letter to Members of the European Parliament on the ePrivacy Regulation

Contact: Michela Palladino - Michela@AppAlliance.org

Developers Alliance Letter to Members of the European Parliament on the ePrivacy Regulation

BRUSSELS - This morning, the Developers Alliance issued the following letter to relevant Members of the European Parliament:

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Dear Members of the European Parliament,

We write to you to share our concerns on the ongoing negotiations on the ePrivacy Regulation.

We are concerned about the draft report, published and presented to the LIBE Committee last month, as we fear that it fails to recognize the importance of the data-driven ecosystem for the European digital economy and risks disrupting small businesses and software developers’ business models and market choices.

In particular, we wish to stress that:

●      The limitations to the processing of communication data and metadata foreseen in the report will hamper the app ecosystem, preventing the execution of basic communication services, functions and features, limiting innovation and jeopardising users’ safety and satisfaction online.

●      The processing and aggregation of communication data enables the development of basic products, such as spam-filtering and fraud detection software, and emerging tech like Machine-to-Machine and Internet of Things as well as applied Artificial Intelligence, and also allows software developers to provide their customers with the best tailored products. This is all highly appreciated by consumers, it is critical for a meaningful online experience and absolutely essential to modern life.

●      The restrictions to the processing of data stored in the terminal equipment and the obligation of privacy by default settings will seriously undermine the ad-based business model that is key for software developers and their businesses to scale-up.[1]

Additionally, they will not be effective in giving more control to users. On the contrary, they will multiply the requests to users for consent in a way that will be seriously detrimental to users’ experience and will reduce trust in digital businesses and their services.

●      The ePrivacy Regulation re-opens the discussion around consent, tracking, profiling, transparency, and security standards that are already addressed by other legislation. The GDPR and the Directive on Security of Network and Information Systems (NIS), combined with a revised Electronic Communications Code, already guarantee a more than sufficient level of privacy and data protection. Imposing an additional level of regulation is unnecessary and goes against the Commission’s Better Regulation agenda. 

For these reasons, we call on MEPs and other EU policy-makers to re-evaluate the content of the proposal in order to:

1.     Avoid further unnecessary constraints to the collection and processing of communication data and metadata;

2.     Re-think the proposed rules about the use of processing and storage capabilities of terminal equipment;

3.     Aim at creating full harmonisation of legal instruments regulating data management and data protection.

The European app sector is vibrant, successful and innovative. It empowers consumers, digitises businesses and impacts positively the European GDP and employment rate We urge MEPs to support digital innovation in Europe and create a workable environment, based on consumers’ trust in the communications services they use.

Yours sincerely,

Michela Palladino

Director, European Policy and Government Relations
Developers Alliance

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[1] 38% of worldwide developers base their business model on advertising, while only 21% are still profiting from downloads and 19% are looking for subscription revenue. On top of this, the trend of adopting a mixed business model is growing: in many cases, paid app business models are integrated with alternative ad-based models.

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The Developers Alliance is the world’s leading advocate for software developers and the companies invested in their success. Alliance members include industry leaders in consumer, enterprise, industrial, and emerging software development, and a global network of more than 70,000 developers.

Statement from the Developers Alliance on the House Judiciary, Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet Hearing on the TC Heartland Decision

Contact: Chris Grimm – cgrimm@appdevelopersalliance.org

Statement from the Developers Alliance on the House Judiciary, Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet Hearing on the TC Heartland Decision

Washington, D.C.  – Below is a statement from the Developers Alliance Senior Advisor Bruce Gustafson regarding the House Judiciary, Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet hearing on the Supreme Court's TC Heartland decision. 

"No one feels the impact of patent trolls more than the small companies that are the heart of US innovation. With limited resources and narrow market windows, the start-ups in the developer community are particularly vulnerable to the extortion of trolls wielding dubious patents in a legal system with a cost of entry beyond a small firm's means. Start-ups are shuttered, jobs are lost, and dreams die over and over, despite the fact that everyone agrees the claims these trolls make are unsupportable.

While we welcome the latest venue guidance handed down by the Supreme Court, it remains to be seen how much this change will improve things for our developer members. The cost of defending a dubious claim, and the ease with which these claims can be made, still creates incentives for shakedown settlements. On behalf of developers and entrepreneurs across the country, we ask Congress to closely monitor the impact of this ruling and to continue to work on relieving the burden of nuisance litigation on small innovators.”

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The Developers Alliance is the world’s leading advocate for software developers and the companies invested in their success. Alliance members include industry leaders in consumer, enterprise, industrial, and emerging software development, and a global network of more than 70,000 developers.

 

Statement from the Developers Alliance on the Council General Approach concerning the Proposal on the Directive on the supply of Digital Content

Contact: Michela Palladino - Michela@AppAlliance.org

Statement from the Developers Alliance on the Council General Approach concerning the Proposal on the Directive on the supply of Digital Content

BRUSSELS – Developers Alliance Director of European Policy and Government Relations, Michela Palladino, released the following statement regarding the adoption of a general approach by the Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Ministers on the proposed Directive on the supply of Digital Content (the “Digital Content Directive” or DCD).

“Since the beginning of the debate on the DCD, the Developers Alliance has expressed its concerns over the proposal’s inconsistencies with legislation put forward under the European Digital Single Market Strategy and its potential to jeopardize innovation and European competitiveness”, said Ms Palladino.

“We believe that today’s JHA Council general approach represents a significant step forward in this negotiation. We welcome the improved regime of remedies and appreciate the Member States’ aim to make rules more effective and fit for the digital age. We also appreciate the efforts of the Council to ensure alignment with the General Data Protection Regulation.

“However, we are disappointed to note that the scope has not been further clarified and has been broadened to include additional services (e.g. Over-The-Top services). At the same time, we regret that the key problem in the proposal, the concept of ‘data as a counter-performance’, has only been addressed semantically.

“The proposal of ‘consumers paying with their personal data’ goes against the essence of data, the functioning of the data market and is likely to negatively impact premium and ads-funded services and content, which is particularly worrying for developers, SMEs and their business models.

“We urge co-legislators to focus on addressing this important issue during the trialogue negotiations and consider narrowing the scope in order to exclude any zero-priced digital content from the scope of the Directive. We also encourage policy-makers to keep in mind the need of consistency and harmonisation of legal instruments, to ensure a stable digital regulatory environment.”

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The Developers Alliance is the world’s leading advocate for software developers and the companies invested in their success. Alliance members include industry leaders in consumer, enterprise, industrial, and emerging software development, and a global network of more than 75,000 developers.

Developers Alliance Expands Policy Focus

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Chris Grimm – cgrimm@appdevelopersalliance.org

Developers Alliance Expands Policy Focus 

U.S. and E.U. Policy Staff Additions to Support Innovators Policy Council

Washington, D.C. and Brussels – The Developers Alliance (formerly Application Developers Alliance) today announced its plans to launch the Innovators Policy Council: a network of innovators and entrepreneurs from around the world including more than one hundred small and early stage companies. The Alliance also announced the appointment of Michela Palladino as the Director of European Policy and Government Relations and Rachel Emeis as the Director of the U.S. Innovators Policy Council.

“The global software developer’s workforce is growing in size and importance every day, and we are proud to be their advocates around the world,” said Jake Ward, president and CEO of the Developers Alliance. “At a time when public policy issues from immigration and data flow to security and taxes are affecting millions of developers and small businesses, I am excited to add such great talent to our team. Their work and the formation of the Innovators Policy Council will enable the Alliance to more quickly and effectively deploy in Europe and North America on any number of issues essential to the future of the software driven economy.”

Michela Palladino will run the Developer Alliance’s Brussels office, focused on E.U. policy issues affecting developers across Europe. Michela brings more than eight years of E.U. Public Policy experience to the Alliance’s Brussels office. Before joining the Alliance, Michela worked for six years at the GSMA, the trade association that represents the worldwide mobile communications industry. Michela will be overseeing a series of policy roundtables this summer across the E.U., including meetings in Berlin, Paris and Brussels. The roundtables will bring mobile app developers together to participate in an open discussion on the role of government in the marketplace, the future of mobile app technology, and the state of competition and the mobile economy in Europe.

Rachel Emeis  will head the newly formed Innovators Policy Council. Rachel specializes in coalition management, crisis response, grassroots engagement, and external stakeholder relationships to achieve advocacy and public policy objectives.

The Innovators Policy Counsel is a global network of companies, startups, and innovators representing more than 35 countries that ensures companies of every size, interest, and industry have a voice in policy discussions and access to policymakers at every level of government.

“The policy goals of software powered companies large and small are closely aligned, but the disparity in resources often limits access and influence,” said Rachel Emeis, the new Director of the Innovators Policy Council. “Alliance members share a common interest in the software developer workforce and public policies that promote innovation and the Innovators Policy Council harnesses the energy and expertise of Alliance members to deliver unique insight, valuable content, and a strong voice on issues and topics affecting the industry.”

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The Developers Alliance is the world’s leading advocate for software developers and the companies invested in their success. Alliance members include industry leaders in consumer, enterprise, industrial, and emerging software development, and a global network of more than 70,000 developers.

Statement from the Developers Alliance on Revising Net Neutrality Rules

Contact: Chris Grimm -- cgrimm@appdevelopersalliance.org

Statement from the Developers Alliance on Revising Net Neutrality Rules

Washington, DC -- Developers Alliance President and CEO Jake Ward released the following statement regarding the Federal Communications Commission’s Net Neutrality revision.

 “The Developers Alliance supports a stable environment that promotes innovation and business growth. Developers need an Internet – wired and wireless – that is open, competitive, stable, fast, and fair to all who use it. As the FCC is set to once again rewrite the rules governing the internet, it is past time for Congress to enact legislation to finally put the issue of Net Neutrality to rest to give developers and entrepreneurs the certainty they need to support future investment and innovation.

 “We should encourage the FCC to make way for congressional action to once and for all set the rules for digital economy and legacy telecom cooperation. Both government bodies and both political parties should consider the stabilizing value of legislation. After more than a decade, developers would relish the certainty that narrowly and carefully crafted bipartisan legislation could bring to this issue. More years of litigation will simply create uncertainty that will undermine developers’ efforts to innovate and invest in our technology future.

"We, as an industry, should call on Congress to put rules in place that keep the Internet open, encourage investment in networks, and that stick. We welcome a legislative discussion that will provide the certainty that developers crave."

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The Developers Alliance is the world’s leading advocate for software developers and the companies invested in their success. Alliance members include industry leaders in consumer, enterprise, industrial, and emerging software development, and a global network of more than 70,000 developers.