Twenty Ten

- 2010: an e-commerce year to remember -

The year kicked off with a victory for manufacturers of luxury products keen to protect their brands, when, in February, a Paris court ruled that eBay should compensate Louis Vuitton for facilitating the sale of counterfeit Louis Vuitton products. Although another case in which a UK court ruled that eBay was not liable for listing fake L’Oréal goods illustrated the battle of ‘the brand owners v counterfeiters’ is far from over, 2010 should be considered as a year in which copyright infringements and counterfeiting were taken more seriously than ever before.

Many countries, like the UK, France, Ireland and South Korea, passed new or updated laws aimed at combatting online piracy more effectively by creating a more defined framework for copyright breaches on the net. In the UK, the controversial Digital Economy Act (DEA) came into force in June and a highly symbollic copyright agreement with China - the biggest infringer - was signed. Enforcement is still considered to be one of the biggest challenges, so many welcomed, in November, the publication of the final draft of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, aimed at establishing standards on intellectual rights enforcement. The US, in the meantime, has taken its own approach and has, without a court order, started shutting down file sharing websites.

It was certainly also a year in which Google dominated the headlines. Its controversial AdWords policy, the data protection and copyright agreements with a number of countries and groups, and the announced investigation into possible abuse in the online search market in Europe all made the headlines. But it was not only bad press for Google: its advertising revenues rose to $25 billion this year.

And 2010 might go down as the year free online news saw the beginning of the end. In July, Rupert Murdoch put his collection of newspapers The Times, The Sunday Times and the Financial Times (FT) behind a paywall. Although unique readership numbers have fallen significantly - readership has fallen around 90% - it seems publishers are starting to see the lucrative side of it: in December, the FT reported The Telegraph Media Group (publisher of The Daily Telegraph) will launch a similar scheme in the New Year, with others expected to follow.
Television also made a digital jump forward. Google launched its Google TV service in November and the UK High Court ruled, in the same month, that the activities of a TV streaming website are covered by copyright law despite the fact that it is not a broadcaster itself.

In publishing, more books were sold online than in traditional bookshops and 2010 was the year of the ‘e-reader’. When the year kicked off, Kindles and Nooks sold impressively well on Amazon but the launch of the Apple iPad in April was an outright, unrivalled milestone. With three million devices sold in the first 80 days, it was undeniably the e-commerce hit of this year.

Published previously in E-Commerce Magazine, London 2010 (C) Copyrights apply

Indians to the polls

The world's largest democracy has started voting. Around 720 million Indians will go to the polls in an election that will take place in five phases. While the first round has already ended, millions will have to wait for their turn until the the beginning or second week of May. 124 constituencies are being contested during the month-long general elections.

The final results are expected on 16 May and a new parliament must be in place by 2 June.The current coalition government, led by the Congress-party and prime minister Singh, is facing one of the biggest challenges in its history, mainly from the opposition BJP-led alliance.Surprisingly, the two main parties are also competing against a "third bloc", mainly consisting of the communist and some regional parties. For now, it is too close to call. (BBC/CNN, pics: BBC Website)

Destination: India

Location: Mumbai
Fall 2007 I started a new chapter in my life, I had moved to the Indian city of Mumbai (the former Bombay). My first impressions? Big, noisy and busy. I discovered it is not too easy to describe the financial heart of India, the country’s biggest city (and one of the fastest growing in the world) and the home of the famous Gateway of India (left).

I think Lonely Planet’s recipe for the Mumbai main course is one of the best I ever read: ‘Measure out: one part Hollywood; six parts traffic; a bunch of rich power-moguls; stir in half a dozen colonial relics (use big ones); pour in six heaped cups of poverty; add a smattering of swish bars and restaurants (don’t skimp on quality here for best results); equal parts of mayhem and order; as many ancient bazaars as you have lying around; a handful of Hinduism; a dash of Islam; fold in your mixture with equal parts of India; throw it all in a blender on high (adding generous helpings of pollution to taste) and presto: Mumbai.’
On this website you will only find a picture impression of what is daily life in India is really about. After all, one picture says more than 1000 words.

Please do also visit my regular London based blog, Thanks

लोकेशन: मुंबई
फाल २००७ इ स्तार्तेद अ न्यू चप्टर इन माय लाइफ, इ हवे मोवेद तो थे इंडियन सिटी ऑफ़ मुंबई (थे फोर्मेर बॉम्बे). माय फर्स्ट इम्प्रेस्सिओंस? बिग, नोइस्य एंड बुस्य. इ दिस्कोवेरेड आईटी इस नोट तू एअस्य तो देस्क्रिबे थे फिनान्सिअल हार्ट ऑफ़ इंडिया, थे कोउन्ट्री’स बिग्गेस्त सिटी (एंड ओने ऑफ़ थे फास्टेस्ट ग्रोविंग इन थे वर्ल्ड) एंड थे होम ऑफ़ थे फमोउस गेटवे ऑफ़ इंडिया (लेफ्ट)
इ थिंक लोनली प्लानेट’स रेसिपे फॉर थे मुंबई मैं कोर्स इस ओने ऑफ़ थे बेस्ट इ एवर रीड: ‘मेअसुरे आउट: ओने पार्ट हॉलीवुड; सिक्स पार्ट्स ट्रैफिक; अ बंच ऑफ़ रिच पॉवर-मोगुल्स; स्तिर इन हलफ अ दोजें कोलोनिअल रेलिक्स (उसे बिग ओंस); पोर इन सिक्स हेअपेद कप्स ऑफ़ पोवेर्टी; अदद अ स्मत्तेरिंग ऑफ़ स्विश बरस एंड रेस्तौरंट्स (दोन’टी स्किम्प ओं कुँलिटी हियर फॉर बेस्ट रेसुल्ट्स); एकुँल पार्ट्स ऑफ़ माय्हेम एंड आर्डर; अस मानी अन्सिएंत बजार्स अस यू हवे ल्यिंग अरौंद; अ हन्द्फुल ऑफ़ हिन्दुइस्म; अ दश ऑफ़ इसलाम; फोल्ड इन यौर मिक्स्तुरे विथ एकुँल पार्ट्स ऑफ़ इंडिया; थ्रो आईटी अल इन अ बीलेंडर ओं हाई (अद्दिंग गेनेरोउस हेल्पिंग्स ऑफ़ पोल्लुशन तो तसते) एंड प्रेस्तो: मुंबई।’
ओं थिस वेबसाइट यू विल ओनली फंद अ पिक्चर इम्प्रेशन ऑफ़ वहत इस डेली लाइफ इन इंडिया इस रेअल्ली अबाउट. आफ्टर अल, ओने पिक्चर सय्स मोरे थान १००० वोर्ड्स प्लेस दो विसित my ओथेर लन्दन बसेद blog अस वेल,। व्व्व.मिचिएल्विल्लेम्स.ब्लागस्पाट.कॉम


Michiel Willems / मिचिएल विल्लेम्स

A Catholic wedding with an Indian touch

No lack of attention

on the train Mumbai - Nashik, without shoes

Destination paradise: Goa

Hitchhiking in Maharastra, India

We were young, naive and did not know any better... hitchhiking from Mumbai to Goa