French Big Brother Awards

By EDRi · January 26, 2005

On 22 January 2005, the jury of the French Big Brother Awards needed no
less than 7 of the famous negative Big Brother Awards to name and shame
projects, people, institutions and companies for destroying privacy and
promoting control. The minister of Health, Mr Douste-Blazy received a
special Jury Award for promoting a new law that created the ‘Dossier
Medical PartagĂ©’, renamed ‘Dossier Medical Personnel’ (from ‘shared
medical record’ to ‘personal medical record’), that puts the entire
medical records of every citizen on the internet, in order to spend less
money and ‘optimise’ French medical care.

The Lifetime Menace Award was presented to the 3 French ‘homeland
security’ ministers Vaillant (left wing), Sarkozy & Perben (right wing),
who introduced new DNA-sampling powers, not just for sexual & violent
criminals, but for every kind of suspects and for minor offences.

A new Award was invented by the French organisers to honour the creative
use of language to hide the real meaning, accurately described in George
Orwells 1984 as newspeak. The first Novlang Award was presented to Gixel,
a trade association of manufacturers of electronic interconnect systems,
components and subsystems. They propose to ‘educate’ children under 6 (and
their parents) about the usefulness of biometric products, helping the
government to spread ‘security values’.

Other winners include 3 MPs that wish to impose GPS empowered electronic
bracelets on sexual offenders, after having served their prison sentence,
for a period of 30 years, and 2 city officials in Marne, who ordered
social workers to give them detailed records about every citizen they were
trying to help.

During the ceremony a positive Voltaire award was presented to members of
the humanitarian organisation C-Sur, who were accused of being ‘criminals’
for helping ‘illegal’ foreigners, after a new French law put this kind of
humanitarian activism under a ‘presumption of culpability’ regime. Another
positive award was given to Charles Hoareau, an unionist who refused to
give his DNA sample after having been engaged in a fight with policemen
during the illegal expulsion of a foreigner without papers. He told the
policemen it was OK to give them his saliva, but only if he could spit on
them, rather than being obliged to open his mouth to let them take the

Press release French Big Brother Awards (22.01.2005)

List of all 30 BBA nominees (in French)