Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 6th Feb 2012 21:44 UTC
Legal It would seem that freedom of speech and the open web are in better hands in Eastern Europe than they are in Western Europe. After Poland, the Czech Republic is the second country to suspend the process of ratifying ACTA. "A wave of protests against the international agreement, including hackers' attacks, has swollen in the world as well as in the Czech Republic. 'By no means would the government admit a situation where civic freedoms and free access to information would be threatened,' [Czech PM] Necas said." Anyone from either Poland or the Czech Republic care to comment on how serious we have to take their politicians? If a Dutch or an American politician said something like this, I'd be weary and mistrusting.
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I think using the term Eastern Europe in connection with the Central European countries should be considered a big no no and avoided as much as possible.

I'm afraid I have to disagree.

I'm from Poland and I have never in my life identified myself as a 'Central European', I have always thought of myself as eastern. Now in the interest of fairness I should mention I've met other Poles who steadfastly refuse to consider themselves Eastern Europeans and only identify as Central. To me however, this is inane and stemming to what I can only ascribe to the animosity towards Russia amongst the general populace and the longing to be accepted as part of the west.

Some people avoid a east/west split in order to not rile up any post war sensibilities, but what they fail to see are that the eastern countries have common cultural and historical identity that gets totally disregarded when you start to lump Poland together with Germany just because they are both near the center. Culturally and historically, Poland has way more in common with Lithuania (a traditionally eastern country), than with Germany. Maybe the Czechs have a different perspective due to their historical ties with the Holy Roman Empire, but as far as Poland is concerned the only thing that ever really tied us to the west was Catholicism.

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