Loopholes Remain After European Parliament Votes on Open Internet

BY Heather Greenfield
March 18, 2014

Brussels — Today the European Parliament’s Industry committee voted on protections to the open Internet as part of a legislative package on telecommunications. The committee voted with 30 votes in favour of the report of Mrs. Del Castillo, with votes 12 against and 14 abstentions. This is the first phase in the process of adopting this legislation.

An open Internet requires that Internet service providers should treat equivalent types of Internet data equally, whatever their source, content or destination. The Telecoms Single Market proposal aims to enshrine the conditions for an open Internet in EU law, whilst allowing the provision by Internet Service Providers of special bandwidth-hungry services running alongside the open Internet.

The following can be attributed to Computer & Communications Industry Association Vice President James Waterworth, who runs CCIA’s Brussels office:

“It is positive that the European Parliament’s Industry committee has voted on the open Internet, but it has not gone far enough. Some important loopholes in the text mean that protections will be ineffective.”

“The open Internet is critical to the entire European economy ensuring that businesses and consumers can use the applications and services of their choice. An open Internet will also provide the European economy with a comparative advantage against our global competitors.”

“The European Parliament plenary vote in April must close the loopholes in this text to ensure robust protections for the open Internet as must the subsequent work of the Council.”

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