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Poland's Prime Minister Goes For Open Government

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the just-the-good-parts-is-bad-policy dept.

Government 80

rysiek writes "In a surprise announcement, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk declared new policy toward a more open state: ''All information funded from public sources should be available as public property, free for everyone to use it as they wish,' said Tusk last week, during a meeting with NGO leaders in Poland. (English translation.) This is very unusual in Europe, and in fact puts Poland ahead of other EU states. A loose web of Polish NGOs for more than two years has advocated more open public information laws. A bill to that effect will now be presented in Sejm (the Polish parliament)."

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Someone gets it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260132)

Wow the birth of an information superpower.

Re:Someone gets it (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36264070)

Someone keep Donald of of small aircraft.

Poland has a recent history of convenient "disasters" involving their politicians.

It's almost as bad as the United States in this...

Re:Someone gets it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36264514)

I hope they're better at IT than they are at plumbing.

Bullshit (4, Informative)

Mafoski (962059) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260154)

Relax, it's just talking, there is an election comming this fall, so he has to fill voters' brains with dull promises. So.. nothing to be excited about, it won't happen.

Re:Bullshit (4, Informative)

cappp (1822388) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260182)

Moreover, the translation suggests his statement was made with significant caveats. TFA's third paragraph suggests that info funded by public sources is public...unless it's not in the best interests of the state, or is defined as classified – the example given is of treasury and economic research. The guy is talking about creating a category of free information, not making everything publically available as the summary claims. Seems it’s about moving Poland towards the position already occupied by the rest of the EU, not barrelling past it.

If I’m reading the translation wrong, and to be fair it’s a little hard on the eyes as it stands, I’d appreciate Polish speakers pointing it out.

Re:Bullshit (1)

paziek (1329929) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260276)

You are correct on this.

Re:Bullshit - A HOW-TO (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260386)

You are correct on this.

This might do you some good [heaven666.org] .

Re:Bullshit (5, Informative)

RedMagic (658608) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260278)

Don't rely on Google Translate for precision :) The Polish text says, that once the provisions are in place, everything will be public and free *by default*, aside from a limited amount of categories, like classified files or financial analysis, which the government relies on in negotiations with other parties.

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36261418)

Don't rely on Google Translate for precision :)

The Polish text says, that once the provisions are in place, everything will be public and free *by default*, aside from a limited amount of categories, like classified files or financial analysis, which the government relies on in negotiations with other parties.

Sounds good. The reason that I hate (yes, hate, it is not an hyperbole) EU is that it have been used by Swedish politicians, bureaucrats and political lobbyists to make the Swedish political process less transparent. All Swedish government processes and documents is public by default, if officials want to keep something secret, they have to get a decision from the right public authority that it will be classified, this decision is in itself a public document, so even if something is classified, the public knows enough to protest if something is classified on weak ethical and legal ground. But when a political process concerning Sweden reach the EU bureaucracy, it gets classified by default, you have to get a decision from the right public authority to get it declassified. Even worse, some of these political processes is started in countries that lack government transparency (i.e. they work like USA and the states of USA, this is how all the EU member states in Southern Europe and Great Britain work), then the public will have no clue what's going on. This totally fucks up the democratic process in Sweden, dragging Sweden (and some other N. European EU member states) down to the same low democracy level as France, Italy, UK and the ilk.

EU is like an information black hole.

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260436)

Mafoski's right. The elections are around the corner and this government has been running like a rabbit on speed trying to push through legislation that is not oriented on solving real problems, but making them look *busy*. The prime minister is essentially saying that all information created using public funds should be free, except for a number of categories. Keeping in mind the tendencies of this country's governments to keep information from its' citizens, there will be an enormous collection of categories of data to which there will be no access whatsoever.
If you want to find out more, just look at our constitution - in theory it guarantees free speech, but in reality can be amended in any way the current political situation demands it.

Re:Bullshit (1)

hat_eater (1376623) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260634)

Color me interested. Where in our constitution do I find the tools to amend it as I please?
Granted, there is a number of anachronisms from the bad old times that restrict free speech for no good reason (and I believe the American constitution has it right when it comes to good reasons to restrict the free speech), but any changes to the constitution require quite a wide consensus behind them.
The open government legislation is of course a step in a right direction as it establishes an important general principle and a legal base to build on, but concerning its particulars, I'd rather wait and see than to pass judgment one way or the other before anything has been written into law.

Re:Bullshit (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260750)

It's not about changing the text of the constitution, it's about introducing laws that conflict with it. The designated role of the president as protector of the constitution, is all but nonexistent - if given bill serves the political agenda of the current president, it will pass. The bill passes into the law and it takes years to overturn it.

No, the polish constitution is not easy to change. But it's "just a piece of paper" that is easily ignored.

Re:Bullshit (1)

hat_eater (1376623) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261342)

Could you provide examples? I'm not saying it's impossible to enact a law that's unconstitutional - if the parlamentary majority and the president are for it, the Constitutional Tribunal will have to overthrow it and it can take time - but you make it sound like it was the norm, not an exception. While 214 cases in 25 years [trybunal.gov.pl] may seem like a lot, bear in mind that most of them concerns rather mundane subjects.

Re:Bullshit (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#36262176)

The 24-hour courts definitely don't provide the arrested with all their due rights.
The "equality of genders" regulations quite frequently put women at unfair advantage, giving them extra privledges.
There is a law that was intended to prevent people from misappropriation of real estate - if given real estate was purchased shortly before its value increased significantly, it can be taken away from you for its original value. No proof of ill intent needed. Honest people lost whole newly built houses, receiving only what they paid for the plot of land, because of this law, as their land appeared to be near planned shopping centers. This is in clear violation of property rights but is an anti-corruption piece.
A person arrested has the right to be informed in a way understandable to them about the reason of arrest. Now which of our "special forces" follows this?
Last but not least, NFZ medication funding practices deprive some people of the right to life by denying medication to curable conditions.

Obama factor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260786)

Whats more, Obama is coming today to Poland, maybe it has something to do with it...

yes, because USA is always keen on freeing data (1)

fantomas (94850) | more than 3 years ago | (#36264082)

"Obama is coming today to Poland, maybe it has something to do with it..."
I am not sure the US government leads the world in its action on opening up its data for the public to see so I am not sure the Polish authorities will be doing this to impress the US - I don't the the US government will necessarily see this as an important step forward by Poland and won't aid trade discussions etc.

Probably this has more to do with impressing the local population, getting re-elected, etc.

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260476)

As Polish speaker. Firstly .. yes it is probably the election talking. Second, he wants to create a new category of information that would be inadvicable to publish in regard to state's security (and such information not being in secret category per se), all the other information created with tax payers' money would be free to use as anybody wishes.

Re:Bullshit (4, Informative)

rysiek (1328591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260516)

well, not quite. there will be some provisions about what is *not* open and up for grabs, but those will be few and will be clearly defined in the bill. everything else will be completely open.

yes, thanks to election looming around the corner it was possible to actually pressure the government and the PM for this, but it looks like it will become the law before the elections. so win anyways.

Disclaimer: I was participating in the meetings, representing the Polish FLOSS Foundation.

Re:Bullshit (1)

piotru (124109) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260778)

Could you please explain the part about blocking the Internet content please?
I am afraid that this was the main concern of the P.M. Tusk's government considering their persistent attempts at silencing and criminalizing the opposition.
Is there a chance that Internet filtering may become enforceable before the autumn elections?

Re:Bullshit (4, Interesting)

rysiek (1328591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260876)

I do not think internet filtering will become law in Poland anytime soon. There is a meeting of NGOs and Ministry of Justice on that topic planned during the next week, and we believe we can convince lawmakers that internet filtering is a bad idea.

I would like to remind you all that a year ago there was an idea for network filtering (in the context of anti-gambling crackdown), and the very same loosely-weaved group of NGOs and bloggers, on a similar meeting with the Prime Minister convinced the Government not to make it a law. So we have a good track record here. Hopes are up.

Re:Bullshit (1)

piotru (124109) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261028)

Thank you for your explanation. Yes, I remember that last year's ad-hoc group meeting with P.M. Tusk. Although many people had objections as to the way that group's members were selected, the outcome has been positive.
Would it strain your kindness to ask where I can find any records from that last meeting, the information about how and when was it announced, who could participate etc.

Re:Bullshit (1)

Serpents (1831432) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261586)

well, not quite. there will be some provisions about what is *not* open and up for grabs, but those will be few and will be clearly defined in the bill. everything else will be completely open

Based on previous examples we can be quite sure that what's classified will be a matter of an arbitrary decision of some low-level clerk trying to cover up their incompetence/ hide something from the general public because if they don't know it exists they're not going to ask some inconvenient questions

Re:Bullshit (1)

silverdr (779097) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260556)

As requested: it is not exactly as you understood, although also no the way, summary tells. He says that there MAY be cases, which can be categorised as non freely available, but IF those get identified, there will be a clear and highly precise catalogue of those cases... Well, it doesn't change things much (backdoor is there) but the wording is more palatable (as expected from an experienced liar^H^H^H^Hpolitician)

Self-interest (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36261186)

What will it take for us to realize (or admit) that the people who run the business of government are driven purely by self-interest? They don't work for you. They don't work for me. That's nothing but age-old lip service, as old as the idea of organized coercion itself.

These people work purely for themselves, and that is precisely why all governments expand in both power and revenue throughout their lifetimes, never willingly or permanently reducing the size of government.

Re:Bullshit (1)

Serpents (1831432) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260528)

I think you're right, he's just running out of ideas on what he could promise to get reelected. Just like the last time everything will be put on a shelf as soon as the elections are over.

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260598)

If it turns out like the previous election promise (he promised to lower taxes, but increased them instead after the election), I'd rather not have him promise that.

Re:Bullshit (1)

gtall (79522) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261702)

Maybe he's taking the script of a similar episode from "Yes, Minister" or "Yes, Prime Minister", I cannot recall which one that was. It was very humorous however.

Re:Bullshit (1)

feepcreature (623518) | more than 3 years ago | (#36263562)

It's Yes Minister. As Sir Humphrey said: "You mean that within the context of our overall policy on Open Government, we should adopt a more flexible posture...?"

And the Civil Service mantras:

  • It takes longer to do things quickly,
  • It costs more to do things cheaply,
  • It's more democratic to do things in secret.

Scarily, at least two of these are true!

Re:Bullshit (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261886)

We need a new category of "Free". As well as "Free as in 'beer'" and "Free as in 'speech'" we need to have "Free as in 'Wishing Well [youtube.com] '".

Trojan (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260170)

Open government data in exchange for blocking file sharing links. Sneaky. Last attempt at internet censorship failed, they are at it again.

Re:Trojan (1)

rysiek (1328591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261432)

And this attempt will fail, too, as people are watching. And no, no such bargain has been done. Network filtering is not something we in the NGOs are willing to agree on. And as last year has shown, we are able to get enough clout to do something about it.

A novel idea, prime minister. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260194)

Can't help myself hearing the voice of Jim Hacker in my head while reading the citation. Or is it just me seeing a huge similarity to "Yes, Minister" here?

FOSS proves worthy? (2)

IZN0GUD (804758) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260206)

Considering that Polish Government has been using FOSS in the majority of the governmental boxes, it is nice to see that their Government looks upon proven qualities of "openness", as well. Playing open minded, with cards shown. Nice.

Re:FOSS proves worthy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260328)

Where did that information come from? I live in Poland and I'm pretty sure FOSS isn't almost used at all on governmental boxes. I used to work for a governmental agency and never saw anything but Windows.

Re:FOSS proves worthy? (1)

IZN0GUD (804758) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260474)

Where did that information come from? I live in Poland and I'm pretty sure FOSS isn't almost used at all on governmental boxes. I used to work for a governmental agency and never saw anything but Windows.

I've been reading about Polish govt accepting FOSS for long time now, it's easy to look it up on the web: http://www.osor.eu/news/pl-ninety-percent-op-public-administrations-use-open-source [www.osor.eu] There are more sources, however, I have no "hands-on" knowledge nor I ever worked for Polish govt. to be able to deny or confirm those claims. If I mislead someone it was not intentional.

Poland was Communist 20 years ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260222)

They can say whatever they like in panels, if there is no concerte decisions and laws to bring those promises to action. The fact that Poland is an ex-Soviet state that ranks very low, even on European scale, in Economic and Political freedoms and corruption does not raise my optimism either.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (4, Insightful)

CSMoran (1577071) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260294)

They can say whatever they like in panels, if there is no concerte decisions and laws to bring those promises to action.

True.

The fact that Poland is an ex-Soviet state

False. A satelite at most.

that ranks very low, even on European scale, in Economic and Political freedoms and corruption

False.

does not raise my optimism either.

Mine either.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (2)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260894)

that ranks very low, even on European scale, in Economic and Political freedoms and corruption

False.

Doing business? 70th place, just behind Namibia. [slashdot.org] Way ahead of Greece, though - what a surprise.

A bit better on transparency [transparency.org] , but still below most proper European countries.

So pretty true, I'd say.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (1)

CSMoran (1577071) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261198)

that ranks very low, even on European scale, in Economic and Political freedoms and corruption

False.

Doing business? 70th place, just behind Namibia. [slashdot.org] Way ahead of Greece, though - what a surprise.

Can't comment on that, you link didn't make it through.

A bit better on transparency [transparency.org] , but still below most proper European countries.

So pretty true, I'd say.

Well, if I count correctly it's #19 out of #45 in Europe. Below most proper European countries? Probably right, for some values of "proper". Sure, that's not impressive, but it's not "very low on European scale", right? I actually am Polish and I can tell you (subjectively) that compared to what happens nearby (Ukraine, Belarus) we're better off. Even the Czechs, which are a more sensible country scored worse on that list.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36261936)

I'm going to tell you a little secret: Ukraine is not Europe.

Anything east of Germany is like an appendix: is a problem waiting to be removed.

Go back to Asia.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#36265852)

Well, if it wasn't for one Pole and his army [wikipedia.org] , the "Asia" would have likely been east of France [wikipedia.org] ...

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (2)

RedMagic (658608) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260332)

state that ranks very low, even on European scale, in Economic and Political freedoms and corruption does not raise my optimism either.

You may have outdated information. We're pretty good over here and many people and businesses thrive. Come, visit, and stay for a while.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (1)

tibit (1762298) | more than 3 years ago | (#36262034)

But guess what: the deal is that there is plenty of countries where more people and businesses thrive than in Poland. Poland simply comes out poorly in comparison.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36263564)

Really? So why are there so many everywhere else in the EU?

And why don't any of you learn to drive properly, you ignorant cunts? You make the French look courteous and the Italians skilfull.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (1)

rysiek (1328591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260532)

well, much ave changed during those 20 years. remember, we were spearheading the demcratic changes in this region.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 3 years ago | (#36267810)

You were attack dogs of Americans who subverted your legitimate left-wing movement/union and placed it in power after it sworn loyalty to them and their right-wing goals.

Re:Poland was Communist 20 years ago (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#36265862)

Most of East European states are actually more economically liberal than West Europe. Some (e.g. Baltic ones) are almost libertarian. That's what you get when you suddenly remove 40 years of planned economy and totalitarianism - the pendulum swings the other way.

ACTRESS :) (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260238)

http://www.bnagladeshi-actresses.co.cc

pierdolenie o Szopenie (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260340)

huja tam

book mark (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260420)

Moreover, the translation suggests his statement was made with significant caveats. TFA's third paragraph suggests that info funded by public sources is public...unless it's not in the best interests of the state, or is defined as classified – the example given is of treasury and economic research. The guy is talking about creating a category of free information, not making everything publically available as the summary claims. Seems it’s about moving Poland towards the position already occupied by the rest of the EU, not barrelling past it.
google is not easy to do

Pirme? (1)

Knx (743893) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260440)

My first thought was: "Hmm. A discovery about Poland's Prime Numbers? What's the definition of a Poland's Prime anyway?". Ok. Time for the first coffee of the day, I guess.

Capitalist Poland (1)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260472)

Capitalist Poland is hell for workers, women, and national minorities. I don't give a fuck about "open government" bullshit that only interest petty bourgeois twitbags on slashdot. For a workers government!

Re:Capitalist Poland (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260770)

We need a real leftist party.
Not SLD which is "liberals painting themselves red".
Not PiS which while leftist in economy, is ultra-right in other issues.
A real party that will fight for the rights of the working man.

Re:Capitalist Poland (1)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261120)

All the fake socialists hailed the Vatican and CIA's nationalist "union" for counterrevolution, solidarnoÅÄ. Trotskyists said Stop SolidarnoÅÄ Counterrevolution!

Re:Capitalist Poland (1)

Per Wigren (5315) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261178)

First, you need to define "worker". Is someone struggling as a self-employed in his one-man plumbing company a worker? How about a politician's secretary? A real estate salesman? Coal miners?

Second, without companies there won't be any jobs for "workers" to attend to. Without rich people, poor people will be even poorer.

How about a trying to make life better for everyone instead? In my experience as a former socialist activist in Sweden, most people on the far left think that it's most important to make everyone economically equal, usually by making the rich poorer. In reality though, that only causes everyone to become more miserable, even though the difference between wealthy and pool become smaller. I've since left socialism and indentify myself politically as liberal. I still loathe conservatism (especially value conservatism) as much as ever. I've realised that the right thing to do is focusing on making life better for the poor and the only way to accomplish that in practice is to make things better for everyone, even the already wealthy and especially the middle class.

Socialism is based on jealousy and that is not a very good foundation for anything.

Re:Capitalist Poland (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261950)

It'sless about money and more about employee's rights. The pretty talk about free market of jobs is conveniently omitting bosses who are liars and thieves.
Free market is all about the "customer" (employee) staying well informed about the qualities of "goods" (job conditions) at various providers. Not so in the job market.

There were sites where the employees could describe the real situation at their workplaces. They were all shut down by litigation by employers whose business was hurt by truth about false promises that attract talented, dedicated employees and leave them disgruntled and disillusioned a year later, when their expertise and talent provided the boss with wealth, and them - only with faltering health.

You might try to litigate but if you are redundant, you can't afford the lawyers (and you earned your boss enough cash for the best lawyers to defend his side). And if given job market is narrow, your boss will let other bosses know that you dare to sue your employer - and you won't find a job in your specialization.

So no, it's not about "raising minimum salaries" or "giving more time off work". It's about protecting the letter of the contract between the employer and the employee, aiding the employee in asserting their rights, keeping dishonest employers from hiding their dishonesty, preventing dishonest abuse of position of power to deprive employees of their rights ("use your overdue holidays now and you're fired") and so on.

The law concerning employee protection in Poland is quite good. I'd say vastly superior to the US law. The problem is enforcing it is a real challenge and there are no strong institutions that would take the employee's side in case the law is broken.

Re:Capitalist Poland (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 3 years ago | (#36262656)

What you are talking about in this post has nothing to with needing a "real leftist party". It has to do with better contract law enforcement and the presence of a vibrant job market. If their are significantly more people available to do a particular job category than there are jobs, it doesn't matter what the laws are, these types of abuses will happen. On the other hand, if you are in a job category where there are more jobs than there are people capable of doing the job, you will not have a problem with this sort of thing, there will be employers clamoring for your services.
I agree that it is a real problem when an employer promises one thing at the hiring interview, but delivers a completely different job setting. There are ways to discover this during the hiring process if you know what you are doing. I have turned down severl jobs because the vibe I've gotten off of those who would be my future co-workers was not consistent with what the hiring manager was saying about the corporate culture.

Re:Capitalist Poland (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#36267838)

Vibrant job market is a pipe dream for which there is no recipe. Many tried and failed.

The contract law is okay as it is, it's that the law system that is hard to access for "joe average", and no institutions that watch over upholding the law by default - it's always the person who is being screwed over that has to fight the legal battle, and receives no help or favors - the same fees apply to a milionaire factory owner and to a broke employee who got screwed over, except it's a negligible drop for the employer and a roadblock for the employee.

There -are- institutions that are intended to watch over this. The problem is their inspectors are corrupt and their competences limited. This all could be remedied by restructuring them with efficient internal control, more power for the inspectors, ability to work undercover, protection to witnesses and so on. This would be quite doable through law that regulates operation of such institutions... ...but nobody's gonna do it because businessmen fund the politicians and it's in the businessmen best interest to keep these organizations powerless. The essential law is good, but there are serious holes in its enforcement - employees can't complain 'cause "law is on your side, go sue the crooks" and the crooks are happy because they can deal with anyone who sues them. Only a strongly "people's" party could challenge the system. But there's none at the time and it doesn't seem like any could happen in foreseeable future.

Nothing new (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260486)

This policy is quite old, so if anything our Prime Minister just restated existing policy. However, there is a catch -- beurocrats can put as many obstacles as they want, i.e. you want a public information? Here we go with xerox, with bad printing, just 700 pages, find what you want.

A lot of goverment also violates that policy and... nothing happens.

In short, forget about policies and law in Poland, only personal influences matter here. We don't even have freedom of speech.

Re:Nothing new (1)

rysiek (1328591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260622)

important part of NGOs talks with the Government in Poland right now is advocating open standards, and transparency. seems we might have gained some ground here, too. there will be an additional Open Data submission soon.

Re:Nothing new (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260968)

We don't even have freedom of speech.

Polack's are even dumber then irish so everything they say is shit anyway.

opendata in France too since May 6th (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260766)

In France the open data did the same big step on May 6th: http://georezo.net/blog/inspire/2011/05/06/decret-sur-le-partage/

Is it a movement of the G8 to fight WikiLeaks?

This year it is election year in Poland (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260808)

So please don't waste you time on translate any texts spread by Polish government :)

Dreams (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260830)

Sorry, but there's a very long way from saying that "something should be" to that really happening. Polish public administration has a long tradition of various "shoulds" that never materialised and even longer tradition of working non-transparently to produce hopelessly flawed and inconsistend legislation.

While I believe Mr Tusk, he has little control over his administration that is split into hundreds of autonomous units, each doing their own business.

Openness is not enough; also Accountability needed (2)

master_p (608214) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260840)

Openness is not enough. What is required is accountability.

For example, the Greek government decided to publish its records in opengov.gr.

In that site, there is a lot of information published, including phone bills from public services. But there is no reference to what phone numbers public servants call, making the freedom essentially useless: we, the citizens, don't know if the public servants spent money phoning other public servants or sex hot lines, for example.

Openness is not useful without Accountability.

Donald Tusk? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260874)

Polish Prime Minister?

Not Enough Consonants Exception raised.

Re:Donald Tusk? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36261058)

From the future: Changing his name to Donald Zdroykowskawitzitusk was the best career move he ever made!

Re:Donald Tusk? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36261240)

More likely, he changed from Zdroykowskawitzitusk to Tusk to make it easier for his US sponsors

Damage control measires - don't buy into it. (1)

boorack (1345877) | more than 3 years ago | (#36260884)

In March this year polish government tried to ram through draconian law that would require registering web sites in local authorities, allowed some beurocrats from KRRiTV (polish FCC equivalent) to decide which content is appropriate, which is not and charge fines / mandate takedowns of content considered "inappropriate" by those beurocrats. Whole affair of passing this crap was "to harmonize with EU laws" of course.

This caused a huge upheaval, especially in ranks of rulling party electorate that considers itself liberal, so the whole process stopped in its tracks - government officials backed off it, propably because of nearby parliamentary elections and now tries various damage control measures, including meetings with various groups and advertising how open they would like to be (and we don't have much choice as the second largest party in Poland are outright hardline neocons (called "Law and Justice" - which is a joke) who already tried to establish their own totalitarian, failed but still stay strong blocking any meaningful political power from being a viable alternative to Civic Platform).

Yeah, right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36260918)

Polish language is so hard that no one will understand the documents anyway.

I'm just joking... (1)

mgpl777 (1621457) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261630)

OK, I live in Poland. First I will write why it doesn't matter what is written in this article. Next I will write why this article is a bullshit. [1] a) One year ago Prime Mnister Tusk tried to create a law that allows a censorship of the internet. People start shouting "WTF", "GTFO", etc, so he withdrew. About one year later he tried do the same thing but in more subtle way. b) Probably as you know about one year ago Polish President Kaczynski has died in the plane crash. Three things about this and Mr. Tusk: - Mr. Tusk during private call with Mr. Putin approved adverse way for Poland to explain the plane crash - Mr. Tusk didn't revealed list of actual special forces collaborators which are connect with mass-media (shortly before his death Kaczynski wanted to do this) - Mr. Tusk didn't revealed agreement with "Gazprom" which is adverse for Poland (shortly before his death Kaczynski wanted to do this) c) During the last Bill Gate's visit in Poland the whole Polish Government licked Gate's shoes. Today nothing change, and it doesn't matter about which political party we are talking. d) This year will be elections. Forget about what politicians talk in a year before an elections. Just remember what they did during a year after an elections. [2] The most important part of the article is: " As explained by the Prime Minister, may appear a new category of cases that are not state secrets, but whose disclosure would not be expedient in the interests of the country as legal expert commissioned for use in financial negotiations conducted by the Treasury." Short summary: Mr. Tusk is a bad gay and this article is about fucking Polish people harder not about more freedom. PS Poland is a state of mind. Not as much as Russia but still too much. I will give you a key to Polish mentality. Anyway, I bet you can't understand it. Watch the best Polish comedy called "Mi" (eng. "Teddy Bear") made by Stanisaw Bareja: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teddy_Bear_(film) [wikipedia.org] This film is a pure surrealism for a western man but I swear it's the truth: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHkCqkn0VKE [youtube.com]

Re:I'm just joking... (1)

hat_eater (1376623) | more than 3 years ago | (#36261858)

Homophobic much? Yeah, I'm joking too.

Re:I'm just joking... (1)

mgpl777 (1621457) | more than 3 years ago | (#36262422)

Yep, my spelling is not perfect... Unfortunately I don't get your joke. I'm not from the USA: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fA65o29kOQM [youtube.com]

Re:I'm just joking... (1)

bzipitidoo (647217) | more than 3 years ago | (#36264320)

You wrote "gay" where you meant "guy". "Gay" has become slang for a homosexual man.

Anyway, about this latest bit of lawmaking. Sounds great on the surface, but I feared it was another attempt at whitewashing. Call the law the opposite of what is really intended.

Re:I'm just joking... (1)

mgpl777 (1621457) | more than 3 years ago | (#36267704)

This is why I mentioned imperfect spelling and sexual joke by Jon Lajoie :)

Generally speaking, much more over this news from Poland...
Yes, we are fucked up. When USSR collapsed USA said "You see!!! No strong economy without democracy!!!" But now China shows that's not true. Western world assumed 20 years ago that China would take democracy with economic cooperation. But now we can see something quite opposite...

Nice related talk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36261866)

From Jon Wilbanks, Creative Commons' VP of Science, in the last Terena conference:
https://tnc2011.terena.org/web/media/archive/12A

A bit more background on the Internet dialogue (1)

saper (34232) | more than 3 years ago | (#36262564)

The issues discussed today included also Internet blocking schemes, mandatory data retention, regulation of the convergent on-demand services as well as liability of Internet service providers and notice and takedown procedures. The Internet community representatives have welcomed progress on some of the issues as well as indicating items still to be resolved during working meetings starting early next week.

http://www.isoc.org.pl/201105/internet-dialogue-poland [isoc.org.pl]

Registry of Disallowed Websites and Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36264782)

This "pro-Open Government" statement comes from a Prime Minister of a government that, not long ago, wanted to create a Registry of Disallowed Websites and Services in an attempt to fight some sort of criminal activities (related to gambling, IIRC).
Some people claimed that such a Registry was a first step towards censorship. Post-socialist Poland closed its Censorship Office in 1991.

Similar Promises (1)

Vitriohl (2171316) | more than 3 years ago | (#36270388)

Current Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, also promised some similar form of transparency, that turned into a joke. I hope this is true, but I wouldn't hold me breath.

surprise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36272046)

There is no much surprise for more enlightened, rationalist and fixed firmly on ground part of our society. Like no others before, and unlike the opposition, foreign affairs, house of prime minister and parliamentary club of ruling party got open accounts on facebook. On internal side, once in a while they collect questions and regularly reply to concerns, questions. On min. FA site, there are regularly coming pieces of information about current moves of head of ministry as well as his office. Many positive changes have happened in Poland recently, many more to come.

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