EU Embraces Free Public WiFi

Hard on the heels of last week’s news about San Francisco making 32 open spaces in the City free public WiFi zones, a joint statement from
the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission says they will fund the EU’s WiFi4EU programme to instal free public Wi-Fi in public squares, piazzas, parks, hospitals and other public spaces across Europe.

Hard on the heels of last week’s news about San Francisco making 32 open spaces in the City free public WiFi zones, a joint statement from
the European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission says they will fund the EU’s WiFi4EU programme to instal free public Wi-Fi in public squares, piazzas, parks, hospitals and other public spaces across Europe.

The scheme will cost €120 million. It is thought it will bring free public WiFi to ‘at least’ 6,000-8,000 towns and villages where WiFi would otherwise be unlikely to be installed.

Towns must apply for the money for the installation via a ‘simple and non-bureaucratic process’ says the EU. The grant will cover 100% of the cost of the installation.

The source of the funding will be decided by the Multiannual Financial Framework programme.

As in San Francisco, the programme seems a belated recognition that the important companies and innovations of the future will spring from the minds of the young, and all that the young need to start a business or incubate an idea is a connection


Comments

10 comments

  1. Metropolitan areas may be well served already but the towns and villages, and the city close to me may as well be living in the 50’s. This is a solid step forward and to be applauded. As for beauracracy, the complaints will come faster and thicker (in many senses) when money is missappropriated.
    I managed the application for EU research funding in industry. The process was exacting but the EU office overseeing the process took my calls or called back promptly, and were helpful and courteous. I found it a very fair process and very mildy onerous given the benefits gained. Certainly easier than some of the dealings had with the old DoE and HMRC.

  2. Ha ha DontAgree I think what I really meant to say is that it’s good to see those self-satisfied, arrogant mandarins roughed up by someone big enough and ugly enough to cause them some grief.

  3. Absolutely SEPAM, mountains of paper represent success to a bureaucrat. They are proud of their 2000 page trade deal with Canada. People with such an anal world view don’t have the capacity to make big decisions. Maybe Macron, who seems a kind of French yuppie, can bring enlightenment to the limited little minds of Brussels.

    • Come on now, be fair. I think bureaucracy can a horrible thing, too. But I can appreciate that drafting a 2000+ page agreement, and getting it signed, could be a very satisfying thing. If only to see the back of it imho…

      Additionally, many an engineer has what could be described as an anal world view, although most of us would deny it in public. And engineers have been known to make pretty good decisions. Arguably the anal world view and the good decisions might not inhabit the same individual, but I’d be happy to hear the evidence for either…

      As for Yuppies… Didn’t Ed fit that category once? So beware the young politician with the hipster vibe…

  4. Totally spot on, Martijn, the EU is so certain it is right about everything that it doesn’t try tp persuade people round to its point of view, or compromise in order to find consensus, it just clobbers people who disagree with it by hitting them with bureaucratic obstacles to enforce its will.Trump may do the EU some good in forcing it to engage in debate

    • Funny you expect Trump to talk (let alone “debate”, which actually involves listening) to the Euros? As long as you equate “order around” with “talk” you are good to go …

  5. I agree DontAgree, that’s what I was trying to say,

  6. a ‘simple and non-bureaucratic process’
    HAHAHAHAHAHAH.
    Yes, because that’s what the EU is all about.
    Juncker gave a fine example yesterday; Trump wants to back out of the climate treaty, partially because it’s a lot of regulation, talk, and waste (though I personally strongly believe climate change is real and the biggest global issue of mankind). Juncker’s response was “it will take years to unwind the agreements”, basically saying “we will bury you in paperwork because we are the EU”.

    • SecretEuroPatentAgentMan

      So, since he felt the argument worked oh so well against Brexit he now tries the successful tactics against the US? Indubitably #usexit will scare the living daylights out of the US, right?

      It is rather bizarre how some equate mountains of paper and torrents of ink with achieving success.

  7. You may have that a little backward.
    I agree with “innovations of the future will spring from the minds of the young”, which is what history has shown time an again.

    However this part “all that the young need to start a business or incubate an idea is a connection” is what you have backward IMHO. In order to reach the young these days you need to give them a good connection. If you do then you will enable *some* of them to start a business in the place where the good connection is. Without the good connection they either leave or are blocked from being successful.

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