Net Neutrality in EuropeSpeaker: Vesa Terävä- Head of Unit B2, DG INFSO -SESERV Workshop20 June 2012
The goals of today’s presentation • To answer questions regarding net neutrality in Europe • To present you the current state of play • To provide information on the way forward in a glance
What is net neutrality? No restrictions Network neutrality is a principle Basic definition that advocates no restrictions by Network neutrality is the Internet service providers or principle that all Internet governments on consumersAbsolute non- traffic should be treated access to networks that participatediscrimination equally in the internet."Network neutralityis best defined as anetwork design Limited discriminationprinciple. The idea is Net neutrality advocates have without quality ofthat a maximally established different definitions service (QoS) tieringuseful public of network neutrality, so there is United States lawmakersinformation network have introduced bills thataspires to treat all no common definition. would allow QoScontent, sites, and discrimination as long asplatforms equally.“ – no special fee is chargedTim Wu, Columbia for higher-quality service.Law School professor First come first served “a neutral Internet must Limited forward packets on a first- discrimination and come, first served basis, tiering without regard for quality- This approach allows of-service considerations." higher fees for QoS as Susan P. Crawford, long as there is no Cardozo Law School exclusivity in service professor contracts.
What is net neutrality in Europe? Reference to the net neutrality principle in the Electronic Communications Framework: « End-users should have the ability to access and distribute information or run applications and services of their choice. »
What has been done until now?• In 2009, the Commission set out in its Declaration on Net Neutrality its commitment to preserve the open and neutral character of the internet.• The declaration was followed by a wide ranging public consultation in summer 2010 and a joint summit organised together with the European Parliament in Nov. 2010.• In April 2011 the Commission published a Communication on the open internet and net neutrality in Europe.• It said it would remain vigilant to ensure that the new EU electronic communications directives adopted in 2009 are properly transposed and implemented.• These rules modernise the provisions regarding ease of switching, transparency and quality of service across Europe, and give National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs) the tools to deal with net neutrality issues.• The directives had to be transposed by the Member States by 25 May 2011.
Why has the Commission waited so far?1. The EUs new telecoms rules contain provisions on transparency and quality of service specifically related to net neutrality. The Commission had to wait to make sure that Member States properly implement these rules into national law.2. Policy makers have to take into consideration the interests of all stakeholders.3. They have to take decisions based on facts.
1. The revised Electronic Communications Framework supports net neutrality Net neutralityChoice Transparency Quality of Switching E-privacy serviceNRAs must NRAs can oblige NRAs can set Initial Surveillance ofpromote the service providers minimum commitment communicationsability of end- to publish quality of period shall not and relatedusers to access transparent, service exceed 24m traffic data,and distribute comparable, requirements + contract offers without consentinformation or adequate and – Art.22(3) with max 12m of the usersrun services of up-to-date USD duration concerned, shalltheir choice. – information– Art. + conditions and be prohibited –Art. 8 of 20 and 21 of procedures for Art. 5 ePrivacyFramework Universal Service termination shall DirectiveDirective (FD) Directive (USD) not disincentivise operator change - Art. 30 USD
2. Net neutrality stakeholders have different goals that have to be considered Content Providers Not e xhau stive want to have: • access to end-users End-Users Internet Service • non-discrimination of Providers want to have: their content want to: • information on what they pay for • protect their investments in • affordable prices the network • access to all content • have high return and applications of on their their choice investments Transit Providers • good quality of the want to: internet service • Keep payment flows • easy switching as it is
3. BEREC’s work in the net neutrality field supports the Commission’s activitiesIn April 2011 the Commission asked BEREC to undertake a fact-finding exercise on issues crucial toensuring an open and neutral internet. Issues BEREC’s results In October 2010, BEREC published a report on best practices to Barriers to facilitate consumer switching. Additional information on switching was changing provided in 2011 based on the output of the Net Neutrality and operators Switching Questionnaire, issued by BEREC. In December 2011 BEREC published a framework for quality of service. Quality of service In December 2011, BEREC adopted guidelines on transparency in the Transparency context of net neutrality by identifying best practices and recommended approaches. Blocking or On 29 May 2012 BEREC published the results of its traffic management throttling of investigation, which covered more than 400 fixed and mobile ISPs and internet traffic gives a very good overview of traffic management practices in Europe. At the same time, BEREC launched a public consultation on three Other further issues related to net neutrality, namely: • quality of service, • differentiation practices and related competition issues, and • IP Interconnection.
Why should the Commission take action now?Ø The evidence from BEREC published in May shows that there is a problem regarding net neutrality on European marketsØ Member States started to take different approaches regarding net neutrality that would lead to a fragmentation of the Digital Single MarketØ Investors need regulatory certainty
The facts from BEREC’s traffic management investigation • Share of users affected: • P2P fixed: 21% (plus some of additional 1%) • P2P mobile: 36% (plus some of additional 6%) • VoIP mobile: 21% (plus some of additional 18%) • Mobile restrictions on other specific traffic: 12% (plus some of additional 10%) • • Share of operators that apply restrictions: • (X% that apply restrictions to all their subscribers plus y% that apply restrictions to some of their users) • P2P fixed: 15% (plus 3%) • P2P mobile: 24% (plus 11%) • VoIP mobile: 3% (plus 20%) • Mobile restrictions on other specific traffic: 3% (plus 5%) • Countries affected by restrictions imposed on subscribers: • P2P fixed: 20, thereof 18 EU MS • P2P mobile: 23, thereof 22 EU MS • VoIP mobile: 15, thereof 14 EU MS • Mobile restrictions on other specific traffic: 9, thereof 8 EU MSSource: The results of BEREC’s traffic management investigation:http://erg.eu.int/doc/consult/bor_12_30.pdf
Member States are adopting different approaches • In the Netherlands, on 8 May 2012 a net neutrality law has been adopted that prevents operators from charging for internet access services on the basis of the services and applications run over the internet. • There is also a proposal for legislation on net neutrality in Belgium. • The French regulator ARCEP has published in September 2010 ten net neutrality principles. On April 12, 2011 the Commission for economic affairs of the French parliament approved the report on net neutrality of MP Laure de La Raudière. The report contains 9 propositions.
What does the Commission propose?Guidance on:• Transparency• Some elements of traffic management• Switching• The responsible use of traffic management tools
The Recommendation will affect positively both consumers and the industry Choice This guidance will boost consumer confidence and choice Regulatory Innovation certainty It will stimulate Under the current innovation by economic enabling new circumstances business models predictability and Recommendation and by facilitating regulatory the market entry of certainty is key for content providers telecom operators and innovative and content businesses. providers. Growth, investments It will help grow the Internet economy and the roll out of high- speed Internet.