back to article UK digi strategy on ice post Brexit results - sources

The UK government's long-awaited digital strategy has been put on ice following the landmark EU referendum decision last week, The Register has learnt. The strategy was intended to be a mixed bag of policy from the department for Culture, Media & Sport, the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills and the Cabinet Office's …

  1. RIBrsiq
    FAIL

    Ah! The hidden costs and impacts start to show up!!

    And it's not like the visible ones were great to begin with...

    1. Yes Me Silver badge
      Coffee/keyboard

      How to save it

      Yeah, this is pretty minor compared to ruining the whole economy. However, there is a way out. 350 sensible MPs are enough to stop this nonsense. Write to your MP asking them to vote against the Article 50 process, because 37% of the registered electorate, many of them clearly fooled by the Brexiteers' lies, isn't enough to be a mandate for national suicide.

  2. Dieter Haussmann

    There is no need to, it will happen through natural wastage and future requirements.

    Many countries outside of the EU follow EU standards for many things (when it suits them), such as Iran and China.

    1. Measurer

      No big deal..

      Manufacturing standards are aligning throughout the World these days, and those countries, geographic areas etc. who don't have their own usually specify either EU or American (UL) standards. See UL 61010-1 as an example of the yanks adopting BS EN IEC 61010-1 (measurement and process control electrical safety) so that it becomes a truly harmonised worldwide standard.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: No big deal..

        " American (UL) standards."

        UL isn't a standard as such (not in the EU sense)

        It's a certification from the insurance industry. (UL == Underwriters Laboratories)

        It's become the de-facto standards organisation for the USA for the simple reason that if it isn't UL-certified, it isn't insured - and unlike CE, UL approval means it's actually been independently tested.

    2. Lars Silver badge
      Coat

      There are standards and regulations and agreements and whats not. And I must admit I was a bit taken by one of those UKIP twats who so happily declared that now Britain well be able to get rid of regulations and create their own. But there is a problem. Britain will have to produce according to EU regulations when selling to the EU and whatever, as before, in the rest of the world.

      So Brits be aware, if regulations, on say food, are watered down in Britain then you might end up eating something the British industry will happily and more "economically produce only for you. Eventually it will also interest manufacturers elsewhere too, who will feel happy to make some extra profit when exporting to the UK.

      And now for the next tragicomical event, the presidential election. Could they be as enthusiastic, time will tell.

  3. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "the delivery agenda has come to a screeching halt"

    "No [..] proper decisions until there’s a new prime minister and Cabinet in place"

    "no one will want to decide until they know the shape that things are going to take"

    "there will be fewer people around to think through what we do with today’s problems"

    aka you voted to leave but, in practice, your administration never will get around to it.

    It's time for Sir Humphry to get his GCMG.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Who wants a boring digital agenda when there are great political games to be played?

      Cameron calling a referendum on a state question with just a simple majority to win it because he had internal party problems and then pissing off two days after he promised to stay and get the UK through this. Labour Remain half-heartedly campaigning while the leader secretly wants out. Tory Leave not having so much as a clue what happens afterwards, you could see it in Johnson's and Gove's faces in that press conference on Friday morning and backtracking on almost everything in the last two days. The SNP had a six-hundred page book with the route map they would follow if they won the independence referendum, Leave have one web page. Labour self destructing at a time when at least one stable party is needed. Half are incompetent and the other half believe in scorched earth and to the winner the spoils.

      Has there ever been a time when it's more obvious that the UK got where it is (was?) despite its political class, not because of it?

      Are they capable of getting decent exit conditions out of the EU? Are they fuck.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        re. Are they capable of getting decent exit conditions out of the EU? Are they fuck.

        are WE? :(

  4. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    With the £ sliding and the FTSE down

    it won't be long before

    - Petrol prices rise 10p/litre

    - Inflation goes up

    - Major employers relocate to the EU proper.

    The vote leave will hit everyone in their pockets

    1. Len Silver badge

      Re: With the £ sliding and the FTSE down

      Employers relocating may take a few months, as will inflation. The immediate effects will be:

      - Rising petrol prices (some time this week) as the global wholesale petrol market doesn't use Sterling.

      - The many companies that had postponed investments until the referendum will now decide not to invest at all for a while or will move their investment to countries that will stay in the EU. That will have started today.

      - Any new European headquarters coming to Europe will obviously not come to the UK now.

      We had started to develop a new service aimed at the European market earlier this year and had already decided to incorporate it in Amsterdam because of worries about the referendum. We are now very glad we chose Amsterdam over London (and run the P&L in euros instead of Sterling).

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: With the £ sliding and the FTSE down

        "Employers relocating may take a few months, as will inflation. The immediate effects will be:"

        That relocation engine is now running though. Even if article 50 is never invoked, many HQs will be out of the UK long before 2 years is up.

    2. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Re: With the £ sliding and the FTSE down

      Price rises depend on how much hedging the trader has in place. For example, an article in El Graun said fashion retailers probably wouldn't be affected until Spring/Summer next year.

      Basically, the UK economy is going to slowly deflate.

  5. Mark 85 Silver badge

    But it usually takes a Whitehall department two years to produce the PowerPoint decks setting out its options, let alone delivering any changes to systems.

    Sounds like typical governments everywhere... they spend more time making PowerPoints than actually doing something. In this case... it might be good to take their time and sort it properly. Starting over isn't a bad idea.

    1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Could be worse

      Imagine what would happen if governments spent more time doing things than actually preparing PowerPoints.

      Free Candy Crush for all MPs!

  6. Nixinkome

    Early [human] days

    It'd be very simple if all that were needed were a reboot with cut and paste and [machine?] translation of existing laws, contracts and agreements. Nearly as simple as an either/or vote.

    I'd hope that 'Brexit' is a further transformer to a leaner and fitter European Union and whatever becomes of the UK.

    US citizens may 'protest' vote but they should now expect much sadness if that vote counts towards a new but unwelcome incumbent.

    Costly as it will be, our referendum result may have been the shot in our own foot that saves the world. Much does depend on who our next leader will be.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Early [human] days

      Fine, but I didn't want to be the one that got shot in the foot...

    2. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: Early [human] days

      It certainly looks like the UK is going to end up leaner, probably by about 35,000 square miles.

      Oops, sorry, forgot where I am. That should read 'by about four times the area of Wales'.

      1. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

        obligatory MP quote

        'Tis but a scratch!

    3. Chairo
      Mushroom

      Re: Early [human] days

      It'd be very simple if all that were needed were a reboot...

      Hmm, reminds me of some movie I've seen a long time ago.

      Complex systems, Dinosaurs breaking out and eating everyone, sounds familiar. Oh, right that sounds like the EU.

      If it seems to difficult to fix, just run away. RIght?

  7. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    What happens to the Rural Payments Scheme affects me. I'm surrounded by land which is part of a hill farm. I hope it stays that way although I suppose the chances of it becoming housing are much diminished - nobody'll be able to afford to buy.

    1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      @Doctor Syntax

      So...as a long term investment isn't it time to make an offer for that land?

      I'm a shareholder in a community land scheme; we've done everybody a favour because if it had been sold off for housing there's stuff under there that would have made housebuyers unhappy (a lot of springs and iron contamination). The UK can only grow 60% of its food at the moment. In a few years agricultural land could be a goldmine.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: @Doctor Syntax

        South facing, most of it steep hillside. Global warming. I'm hoping someone turns it into a vineyard.

        1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

          @Doctor Syntax

          "I'm hoping someone turns it into a vineyard."

          Go for it yourself. You can ask jake for a couple of pointers.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Vineyard

          To make good British wine. Cheers! Mine's a glass of Concorde.

      2. Paul Shirley

        Re: In a few years agricultural land could be a goldmine

        In a few years time there may be no one prepared to pick the crops.

        1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

          Re: In a few years agricultural land could be a goldmine

          "In a few years time there may be no one prepared to pick the crops."

          Some of the Leavers are already admitting immigration won't go down; this seems to have been purely a war between factions of the Conservative Party and we are just collateral damage. But if it does, and IDS returns to the DWP, I await workfare with considerable interest. The people currently shouting at Poles to go home may find they're the ones being rounded up to dig the potatoes.

          1. Down not across Silver badge

            Re: In a few years agricultural land could be a goldmine

            Some of the Leavers are already admitting immigration won't go down;

            Seems possible result. If UK wishes to remain part of the common market, it is likely to come with strings attached.

        2. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

          Re: In a few years agricultural land could be a goldmine

          "In a few years time there may be no one prepared to pick the crops."

          The year after that everybody on JSA is called to a work-focused meeting. They are then told to get on a coach and go pick crops or be sanctioned. Et voila, our transformation into Victorian England is complete.

          1. organiser

            Re: In a few years agricultural land could be a goldmine

            A.k.a. the road to serfdom.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @Doctor Syntax

        The odd thing is that in these here parts (S.West) most farmers seemed to vote leave - at least, judging from the Vote Leave posters in every field.

        1. nematoad Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: @Doctor Syntax

          "The odd thing is that in these here parts (S.West) most farmers seemed to vote leave - at least, judging from the Vote Leave posters in every field."

          Yes, hypocrites to a man.

          Just look at Cornwall, the beneficiary of EU grants and yet they voted to leave. The County Council is now bleating that the Westminster government should ensure that Cornwall keeps all its subsidies, not from the EU of course but from the rest of the UK.

          Talk about having your cake and eating it.

          1. David Beck

            Re: @Doctor Syntax

            There is no "EU" money, it all comes from the member states and since the UK sends more than comes back, the money Cornwall gets for having it's fishing industry destroyed by the Common Fisheries Policy is UK money passed through the bowels of Brussels.

            Just a thought.

        2. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

          Re: @Doctor Syntax

          "The odd thing is that in these here parts (S.West) most farmers seemed to vote leave"

          I do feel sorry for the poor dears: having to spend all that time filling in forms and complying with the bureaucracy in order to get their EU handout.

          Sarcasm aside, 43% of EU law is focused on agriculture and the environment. I imagine it is quite onerous. But if that changes post-Brexit then animal welfare will decrease, our food will be less safe and the environment will be more polluted.

          1. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: @Doctor Syntax

            "Sarcasm aside, 43% of EU law is focused on agriculture and the environment."

            For a very simple reason.

            EU policy is firmly based around the EU being self-sufficient on food without destroying its own environment. Remember that the primary driver for its formation was a nasty postwar famine and fuel shortage.

      4. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: @Doctor Syntax

        "The UK can only grow 60% of its food at the moment."

        That's been the case for more than 100 years.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      "What happens to the Rural Payments Scheme affects me."

      Based on what I've already seen (contracts under negotiation simply "went away" on Friday), if they're not cancelled immediately, they'll be shut down at the next review.

      When Wales realises what they've gone and done I can see them doing a referendum on independence simply to reattach to the EU funding pipe.

      1. organiser

        Plaid Cymru has already put a referendum on an independent Wales back on the agenda.

    3. organiser

      Look at it from the bright side - people migrate to where the jobs are, and after the referendum the UK has become much, much less attractive as a country to migrate to, so new houses may never need to be built.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Register's list of Brexit Impacts

    Hi

    It's interesting to start thinking through the practicalities of this. Could the Register gather a list of impacts? Here's some that come to mind:

    1, Untangling all EU policies from all government IT systems

    2. EU Cookie Policy on Websites - Does the UK have to create it's own

    3. EU Data Protection Law - UK has to negotiate it's own, as well as Safe Harbour?

    4. The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive for disposal of equipment, might eventually be a UK one.

    If I understand this correctly: any IT budget should start assessing cost for including these post Article 50, whenever that might be.

    1. stungebag

      Re: Register's list of Brexit Impacts

      The list of impacts can be phrased fairly succinctly:

      1. Everything

      Every agreement we have in place with the EU, and every agreement the EU has with anyone else that we're a party to as a consequence of our EU membership, will need to be rejigged.

      Several years and several billions of pounds later we may manage to get back to where we started.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Register's list of Brexit Impacts

      "Here's some that come to mind"

      UK.gov can simply pass a law stating that all currently adopted EU standards are UK standards.

      The trickier parts are in reasserting international trade agreements. This has been outsourced to Brussels for several decades and those with experience are long-retired.

      The IT systems for this side of things don't exist, but neither do the departments needed to actually administer them.

      1. David Beck

        Re: Register's list of Brexit Impacts

        You don't need to pass a law. All EU regulations and directives are UK law. That's what being in the EU meant. Does no one here know anything about the EU?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    but...

    when I voted to leave I was told we'd be independent and stuff?!

    And I thought in place of EU subsidies we'd get Westminster subsidies?!

    Oh the indignity!

    ...and now you're saying istead of them subsidies we need to pour 80 bilion to replace Faslane?! I feel cheated! Help, help! :/

    1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: but...

      Good news: there will be no money to replace EU subsidies because we will be spending an extra £50million per day on the NHS. The NHS budget for England (not UK) in 2013-14 was £110billion (£300million per day). If we kick out all the foreign doctors and nurses the payroll reduction with the 16% increase in funding might be enough to balance the loss of value of the pound!

    2. organiser

      Re: but...

      <sarcasm>But we did take back control and we did get our country back, didn't we?</sarcasm>

  10. Mephistro Silver badge
    Holmes

    All is not lost yet

    After a few months of suffering the short term effects of the Brexit referendum an being informed at large of the long term consequences, the public -including most of those who voted leave- may well start massively asking for a new referendum, with the exception of some hopeless fuckwits and sickos, of course.

    A good argument for this approach would be the way that two important groups of voters -British expats and youngsters age 16 and 17- were denied the vote. I'd very much like to know the rationale for the exclusion of those groups. Another argument would be the massive amounts of BS spewed -mostly- by one of the sides of the debate, and the role played by news outlets, massively pro-leave.

    On the other hand, if Boris or Theresa are left in charge of the proceedings, they'll probably try to sabotage any efforts in that direction, each for his/her own reasons, so Cameron and the Tories should choose the new PM very carefully or even call for new elections.

    If we're really lucky, this brouhaha may even kill the British exceptionalism in the UE and help reform the UE and make it more democratic. A win-win in my opinion.

    Whichever way things go, I wish you the best of lucks in these trying times.

    1. nematoad Silver badge

      Re: All is not lost yet

      "...British expats and youngsters age 16 and 17"

      Well there seems to be a bit of confusion on the ex-pat side. Not everyone is entitled to a vote. If you have been out of the country for more than 15 years, then sorry, you are out of luck. Which, in my opinion, is as it should be. If you have such distant links to the UK then you may not have the best interests of the country at heart. For those who do qualify there seems to have be a bit of a fiasco in as much as some voters never got their postal votes or if they did, did not have enough time to send them in. An inquiry is going to be held on this.

      As for 16-17 year olds not having a vote that's because they are not old enough. Hard on them but that's the way it's set up just now. In Scotland they were given a vote, probably to try and skew the result but that seems to have failed.

      Basically it's a matter of the franchise and those people you mentioned mostly haven't got it.

      1. Mephistro Silver badge

        Re: All is not lost yet (@ nematoad)

        Regarding the expats, I was aware of that, and the issues with mail voting. I just didn't want to write a 2.000 words essay on the subject! :-). Anyway, there are lots of long-term expats in Europe, usually retired people living in Southern Europe. And they should have a say on this. And I don't think said expats have gone native, as I personally know several of them who have been in Spain for one or two decades and they have learned just enough Spanish for shopping and going to a restaurant, when they don't do all their shopping and their drinking in British owned/speaking pubs and shops! They watch British TV and read British newspapers, also.

        And regarding the 16-17 years old... please can someone explain to me why they were given the vote in the Scottish referendum and not on this one? Was this just gerrymandering on steroids going wrong... or going right?

    2. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: All is not lost yet

      At the time of this post, the odds favour Boris. His constituency voted remain.

  11. noboard

    "If we're really lucky, this brouhaha may even kill the British exceptionalism in the UE and help reform the UE and make it more democratic. A win-win in my opinion."

    Eu reform itself. Before we left what reason did it have to do that? Peter Mandelson doesn't join an institution to help reform it, he joins because it's looting time.

  12. PhilipVirgo

    So what effect will Brexit have on the IT industry?

    1) prices of US Cloud Services and hardware already up 10 - 20% - will be build our own or buy from China?

    2) wholesale replacement of central government IT systems - ? upgrades or transition to new build at a fraction of the cost to run but what about security?

    3) End of US subsidy for GCHQ Powers because EU communications with US (as the global internet hub) no longer run via the UK but via France and Spain

    plus ... http://www.computerweekly.com/blog/When-IT-Meets-Politics/What-effect-will-Brexit-have-on-the-IT-industry-and-profession

  13. J J Carter Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Who kept the source-code?

    Just use version conrol to roll-back to the s/w that was running in 1973. Simples!

  14. Strahd Ivarius

    Well, will UK be able to revamp the government IT systems without the help of bloody foreigners?

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