Parliament today voted for a Regulation on a Single Market for Electronic
Communications. The EU institutions will claim that this will protect net
neutrality. This is sadly not true.
European Parliament has avoided making decisions on all crucial points,” said
Joe McNamee, Executive Director of European Digital Rights. “Now, national
regulators will have to decide – on abuses imposed through ‘zero rating’, on
rules on congestion management, on specialised services and so on”, he
added. “We will engage with BEREC and the Commission to provide clarity in
the interpretation of the rules. Hopefully, the vagueness of the regulation can
be fixed by BEREC’s guidelines and through diligent enforcement by national
telecoms regulators”, Mr. McNamee concluded.
Esta es la posición de Tim Berners-Lee no seguida por el Parlamento en su decisión:
"Tomorrow, members of the European Parliament face a key vote on the future
of the Internet. The proposed regulations in front of them are weak and
confusing. To keep Europe innovative and competitive, it is essential that MEPs
adopt amendments for stronger “network neutrality” (net neutrality).
When I designed the World Wide Web, I built it as an open platform to
foster collaboration and innovation. The Web evolved into a powerful and
ubiquitous platform because I was able to build it on an open network that
treated all packets of information equally. This principle of net neutrality
has kept the Internet a free and open space since its inception.
Since then, the Internet has become the central infrastructure of our time
— every sector of our economy and democracy depends on it.
To strengthen and clarify the proposed EU net neutrality rules, here are
the amendments that MEPs should insist on:
The current proposal allows ISPs to create fast lanes
for companies that pay to have their content load faster by calling them
“specialized services”. Fast lanes will make it harder
for anyone who can’t pay extra fees — start-ups, small businesses, artists,
activists, and educators in Europe and around the globe — to reach Europeans
online. MEPs should vote for the amendments that close the so-called
“specialized services” loophole to prevent the creation of online fast lanes
and keep the Internet a level playing field.
The current proposal permits ISPs to exempt
applications from users’ monthly bandwidth cap (“zero-rating”). Economic discrimination is just as harmful as technical discrimination, so
ISPs will still be able to pick winners and losers online. MEPs should adopt
the amendments that allow member states to create their own rules regulating
the harmful practice of zero-rating. That way, States which have already banned
this practice will be able to continue to do so, while others can move to
protect innovation if they choose.
The proposal allows ISPs to define classes of
services, and speed up or slow down traffic in those classes, even in the
absence of congestion. As well as harming competition, this also discourages
encryption: many ISPs lump all encrypted services together in a single class,
and throttle that class. MEPs should vote for the amendments that ban
class-based discrimination to protect users, competition, privacy, and
The proposal allows ISPs to prevent “impending”
congestion. That means that ISPs can slow down traffic anytime,
arguing that congestion was just about to happen. MEPs should vote to close this loophole.
If adopted as currently written, these rules will threaten innovation, free
speech and privacy, and compromise Europe’s ability to lead in the digital
To underpin continued economic growth and social progress, Europeans
deserve the same strong net neutrality protections similar to those recently
secured in the United States. As a European, and the inventor of the Web, I
urge politicians to heed this call. Meanwhile, the Web belongs to all of us,
and so it’s up to each one of us to take action. European residents can visit
the savetheinternet.eu website today to contact their MEP and ask them to vote for the amendments
that will protect the open Internet for us and future generations."
– Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, Founding Director of the
World Wide Web Foundation