#74: €9 tix, Covid fraud, oldies rave, Datenschutz
And money keeps flowing to Berlin startups.
Hey there 20 Percent Berlin,
When I saw this I rubbed my eyes: Dr. Motte, the 62-year-old founder of the Loveparade, is reviving the legendary open air rave on July 9 — on Ku’damm, the street where the very first parade took place to celebrate Motte’s birthday in 1989.
In the 1990s, the techno street party moved to Tiergarten. In 1999, organisers boasted of 1.5 million ravers. In 1997, the fuckparade was founded by DJs and clubs turned off by the crass commercialisation of the event — and is still around today.
The Loveparade went bankrupt in the mid-noughties — but was acquired and moved to the Ruhr region in western Germany by the owner of the country’s largest gym chain, Mcfit. It all ended in tragedy in 2010, when 21 people were crushed to death in a tunnel in Duisburg.
Thankfully, Dr. Motte’s new venture has a new name: Rave the Planet. And it will be more political than ever before. Demands include universal basic income and granting “techno culture in Berlin” UNESCO cultural heritage status.
I expect Rave the Planet will be a small affair attended mostly by aging clubbers. Surely Gen Z wouldn’t be seen dead at such a thing. You might see me there, though.
More news below!
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The Berlin corona stats for Tuesday, May 17
Received booster: 61% (60.9% Friday)
New cases in one day: 2,686 (2,470 Friday)
Total deaths: 4,556 (+12 over Friday)
🔴 7-day Covid-19 incidence (cases per 100,000): 346.8 (356.7 Friday)
🔴 7-day hospitalization incidence (also per 100,000): 8 (8.5 Friday)
🟢Covid-19 ICU patient occupancy: 5.8% (5.5% Friday)
Source: Berlin’s corona page
Data protection gone mad
It’s hard to believe that on the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT), when the Progress Pride Flag will fly on official buildings across the city, Berlin has created a new obstacle in the struggle against anti-queer violence. According to Berlin’s Data Protection Office, Berlin police can no longer pass on anonymous information about racist, antisemitic, homophobic and other street crimes to organisations that raise awareness and support victims, ostensibly to protect victims, reports Berliner Zeitung. In order to “prevent re-identification”, the shared data must neither describe the crime nor name the place, such as the street, or time of the crime. The age of those involved must also not be included, the Datenschutz office said. Organisations like Maneo, which tracks queer-phobic attacks, and Reachout, which documents racist assaults, say their work will be compromised by the change. Maneo head Bastian Finke said: “A successful format that worked well for 25 years and was considered useful or approved by the police can now no longer be continued.”
€9 tix go on sale next week
The cheap flat-rate public transport tickets intended to reduce consumption of Russian oil are expected to go on sale in Berlin and Brandenburg no later than Monday, May 23, reports Tagesspiegel. The S-Bahn plans to begin peddling them Saturday (May 21). Monthly passes will cost just €9 and can be used in local public transport across Germany as well as in regional trains starting June — making it possible to traverse the entire country for the price of a couple of beers. The scheme will run from June through August. The national association of local transport providers expects 30 million people will use the tickets.
Massive corona fraud
Iris Spranger (SPD), Berlin’s interior minister, said city authorities were investigating around 10,000 cases of corona-related fraud including 2,400 fake vacccination certificates and forged doctor’s notes exempting people from face masks. Speaking to the Berlin state parliament, Spranger also said police were investigating 379 cases of privately run corona test centres overcharging the state — here alone, finanical damages could amount to at least €25 million.
Fresh cash for food firms
Efficiency-boost coming to your local Späti: Berlin-based start-up Magaloop (no connection to Donald Trump), whose app simplifies the the ordering of wares for small retailers like convenience stores and bakeries, has raised €9 million in new funding. Meanwhile, Berlin’s Bosque Foods, which is developing animal-free proteins made out of funghi, raised a respectable €2.5 million. The biotech entrepreneurs use “solid-state fermentation to create edible mycelium” with the look and feel of cuts of chicken and pork. Both of the above received funding from Berlin’s Food Labs. And while we’re on the subject of ‘shrooms, another Berlin company, Zvnder, makes animal-free “leather” from timber funghi.
One “dooring” accident affects cyclists in Berlin every day — i.e. a car driver opens his door into a passing biker. Six percent of bike accidents fall under the category. Protected lanes are gradually popping up on major thoroughfares, but until then cyclists should remain vigilant and maintain a distance of at least a metre from parked cars.
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