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C 155 E/148 Official Journal of the European Union EN 3.7.


Since the proposal for a Directive on Market Access to Port Services deals with services exclusively within
port areas, it would not appear to be appropriate to include detailed security aspects in this directive.
However, the question of security-related conditions for service providers in ports is being examined by
the Council and the Parliament in the framework of the legislative procedure on this proposal.

The Commission does not believe that the diversity of the ports, their local specificities and requirements,
the variety of shipping services, experience in Member States together with the application of the
subsidiarity principle warrant the introduction of general rules on public service obligations for pilots.

(2003/C 155 E/164) WRITTEN QUESTION E-3392/02

by Astrid Thors (ELDR) to the Commission

(28 November 2002)

Subject: Unsolicited advertising in Windows, protection of personal data in telecommunications networks

In recent months, Windows programme users have been annoyed by advertising windows which pop up
on screen. These windows do not come as e-mail or over the web but come in through the user system’s
back door. The process has been described by the Finnish newspaper IT-viikko in its edition of
14 November 2002. It reports that the advertising is carried out with the aid of a programme developed
by a company called Direct The programme uses features in the Windows Messenger
programme, the intended purpose of which was to enable users to send messages to the webmaster. The
Messenger features are found in Windows 2000, NT and XP programmes.

Does the Commission consider that the recently adopted directive on protection of personal data in
telecommunications networks offers consumers sufficient protection against such windows?

Answer given by Mr Liikanen on behalf of the Commission

(27 January 2003)

Commercial messages sent via the programme of ‘Direct’, as referred to by the Honourable
Member, do not fall within the definition of electronic mail as included in Directive 2002/58/EC of the
Parliament and of the Council of 12 July 2002 concerning the processing of personal data and the
protection of privacy in the electronic communications sector (Directive on privacy and electronic
communications) (1). This definition only covers messages that can be stored in terminal equipment until
they are collected by the addressee. Messages that depend on the addressee being on-line and that
disappear when this is not the case, are not covered by the definition of electronic mail. As a consequence,
the new Directive does not impose an opt-in for such messages (as under paragraph 1 of Article 13), but
instead allows Member States to choose between an opt-in and an opt-out (paragraph 3 by Article 13). In
accordance with the Directive, the national opt-in or opt-out rules will have to be in place by 1 November
2003 at the latest.

At its website, ‘Direct’ explains how users of Windows software can block messages from
entering their terminal equipment by switching off the Windows Messenger programme. This information
would also have to be provided as part of the messages that may be sent via the programme in order to
offer recipients an opt-out facility as imposed by the new Directive, without prejudice to more stringent
national opt-in requirements.

Moreover, it would appear that the Windows Messenger programme is in any case not intended for use by
third parties to send unsolicited messages and that the ‘Direct’ software inappropriately
uses it as a backdoor into the terminal equipment of potential customers. In its ongoing dialogue with
3.7.2003 EN Official Journal of the European Union C 155 E/149

industry on personal data and privacy issues, the Commission will continue to stress that software should
be designed to be privacy friendly and that defaults should be set in such a way that users have adequate
control over third party access to their terminal equipment and to data stored on that equipment.

(1) OJ L 201, 31.7.2002.

(2003/C 155 E/165) WRITTEN QUESTION E-3396/02

by Avril Doyle (PPE-DE) to the Commission
(28 November 2002)

Subject: Experimentation on chimpanzees

What is the Commission’s view on continued experimentation on chimpanzees at the Biomedical Primate
Research Centre in the Netherlands, the only remaining facility in the European Union still using
chimpanzees for experiments?

The laboratory situated near The Hague is planning one final experiment on six healthy infant
chimpanzees by infecting them with the incurable hepatitis C virus. I urge the Commission to intervene
to prevent this one final experiment at the Biomedical Primate Research Centre.

Answer given by Mrs Wallström on behalf of the Commission

(8 January 2003)

Experimentation on animals falls under Council Directive 86/609/EEC on the approximation of laws,
regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States regarding the protection of animals used
for experimental and other scientific purposes (1). The Directive states that animal experiments shall not be
performed if another scientifically satisfactory method is reasonably and practicably available (Article 7.2).
The choice of the animal species should also be carefully considered (Article 7.3).

The implementation of the Directive is the responsibility of the national authorities, in this case the Dutch
authority. So far, the Commission has not received any information that indicates that the proposed
experiment is in breach of the Directive.

The Commission is aware that the use of non-human primates such as chimpanzees in experiments is a
sensitive issue. In the upcoming revision of the Directive, this issue will play an important role.

(1) OJ L 358, 18.12.1986.

(2003/C 155 E/166) WRITTEN QUESTION P-3398/02

by Carlos Ripoll y Martínez de Bedoya (PPE-DE) to the Commission
(22 November 2002)

Subject: The ‘Prestige’ incidence off the Galician coast

On Wednesday, 13 November, the oil tanker ‘Prestige’ on route from Latvia to Gibraltar was damaged and
destabilised, apparently by the heavy seas caused by the storm off Finisterre. The Spanish authorities were
as a result forced to activate appropriate rescue and safety proc-edures, thus preventing an ecological and
environmental disaster of unforeseeable dimensions, whose consequences could have been far worse than
was actually the case

Given that the available information indicates that the ‘Prestige’ underwent compulsory inspection in
Rotterdam Harbour in 1999, during which anomalies were detected, and that there is no news of the
vessel’s being re-inspected, despite the fact that it has called at Community ports.