Posts Tagged ‘net neutrality’
In the past two years we’ve witnessed various events that have had an impact on the open character of the Internet. In October 2015 European Net Neutrality rules were published, providing guidelines for regulation, but they were criticized by many as being too open and leaving too much room for uncompetitive behavior (here’s an example). In June 2015 the FCC published its US Open Internet order along the line of “no blocking, no throttling, no paid prioritization”, driving a significant change in the IP Interconnection landscape especially. In parallel, we saw ongoing consolidation on the side of the ISPs, with large ones absorbing their smaller competitors or other players in the digital value chain (e.g. cloud hosting services, “Over-The-Top” – OTT – video services) or even merging with mobile providers. Another trend we saw was the launch of services for which the related Internet traffic is not counted towards the “monthly data budget” of the customer, typically referred to as “zero rating”.
If it is up to the Dutch Minister of Economics, Maxime Verhagen, net neutrality will be legally adopted in the Netherlands. This was stated in the Dutch Parliament during a debate yesterday regarding a new telecommunications law where the “net neutrality” amendment was embraced by most political parties. The amendment requires Internet providers and telecom operators ensure equal access for customers to all types of content, services, or applications and prohibits the blocking, delay or obstruction of specific services.
Net neutrality is one of those things we, as a reliable hosting provider, need to support to ensure all internet content is readily available without additional cost, which is traditionally the way content is provided to users. LeaseWeb strongly supports an ‘open’ internet with content freely accessible to viewers without a ‘gatekeeper,’ artificial barriers, or any other restrictions on internet content. Recently some broadband providers have moved to impose a “toll” on content providers, which could seriously damage users’ access to the internet.