According to breaking news, the proposals announced by the European Union, which will come into place in April 2012 include the dropping of the 12 Royal cards (Kings, Queens and Jacks) from all packs of cards manufactured within the EU in order to reflect the fact that there are more republics than monarchies among members states.
The familiar suits of Clubs Diamonds, Hearts and Spades would be joined by a new suit, Stars (see specimen pack above) making up the new 'metric' pack of 50, as opposed to the traditional 52, cards.
I understand that The Magic Circle is, apparently, planning to mount a legal challenge to these proposals. A spokesperson said: "We are very concerned by these news rules... The standard pack of 52 cards embodies a long legacy of cultural and magical history. Frankly, many of our members are hoping to make these new rules disappear."
For more on this story and the response of the world's premiere magic club, visit the website of The Magic Circle.