Saturday 2 January 2010

Spain’s EU Council presidency website: New treaty – old communications (Updated)

After Sweden with the last presidency of the Council of the European Union, mainly under the Treaty of Nice, Spain’s presidency website – the first with the Lisbon Treaty in force from day one – paradoxically feels like a throwback to old times: European Digital Agenda in 2010 on first day of Spanish EU Council presidency (1 January 2010).

There was a summary of the Spanish work programme, but no full programme. The 18 month programme of the presidency trio Spain, Belgium and Hungary was not easy to find, and it was still presented as a draft. Links and languages did not match.

The structure of the Spanish presidency website did not make for easy, intuitive navigation. The Spanish government vaunts its European engagement, but there were no signs of interactive engagement with the citizens of the European Union.

New generation treaty – old style communications?

Yes, this is how it looks on the first two days of the Spanish presidency, but much can be improved during six months, if the will is there.

Update 2 January 2010 about 19:45 EET: I have noticed that the Spanish EU Council presidency website has drawn critical comment from at least the following eurobloggers, on different grounds: The European Citizen, Julien Frisch and Jon Worth.

Hopefully, the Spanish government takes the viewpoints seriously.

Update 4 January 2010 about 22:55 EET: Julien Frisch has been following the story, with five updates, since Mr Bean appeared on one of the webpages of the Spanish presidency. - Hopefully the Spanish government starts to take the functionality, navigability and contents of the site seriously.

Ralf Grahn

P.S. Read The European Citizen and other great euroblogs listed on multilingual, our common “village well” for fact, opinion and gossip on European affairs.

While you’re at it, why not pop over to read Grahnlaw’s sister blogs, Grahnblawg in Swedish and Eurooppaoikeus in Finnish?

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