European Parliament Key Vote On Net Neutrality Laws – 24 February

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The European Parliament (EP) is scheduled to vote on 24 February [corrected] on the draft Single Telecoms Package Regulation drafted by the Industry, Research and Energy Committee – on the future of neutral internet.

The draft contains amendments following opinion reports from other committees of the EP and groups.  However, there have been concerns that some of these amendments have been watered down by the lead rapporteur, Pilar Del Castillo Vera, in “compromise amendments”.

Groups such as the Public Service Media (PSM), European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) oppose current provisions that allow internet service providers (ISPs) to provide ‘specialised’ services running on different bandwidths in parallel to the open internet.

While they accept the existence of these services, it must not be to the detriment of the internet and must be strictly regulated, they said. ISPs must also be “transparent, non-discriminatory [and] proportionate” in their management of data, the EBU said.

Lobby group La Quadrature du Net raised particular concern about amendments that will allow telecom operators to alter the quality of service for different traffic, as well as allowing delivery of ‘specialised services’.

 

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