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giovedì 25 ottobre 2012

Neutral Net

La Commissaria Europea Kroes condanna espressamente la proposta ETNO
Neelie Kroes, il commissario europeo di DG Connect responsabile per la Digital Agenda, ha espressamente preso posizione contro la proposta ETNO relativa ai trattati ITRs. 
La presa di posizione è contenuta nella risposta resa il 22 ottobre 2012 in relazione ad una interrogazione parlamentare di un deputato europeo dei verdi. ....

Parliamentary questions
10 September 2012
Subject: Net neutrality and the EU's proposed position at the World Conference on International Telecommunications

The answers given by Commissioner Kroes to my questions E?005879/2012 and E?007464/2012 concerning the plan submitted to the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) by the European Telecommunications Network Operators Association (ETNO) under which online service providers would be required to help cover the cost of Internet traffic still leave certain points unanswered. Hence the need for this third set of follow-up questions.
1. What exactly does the Commission mean, in its answer, by 'managed services'? Apart, for example, from IP TV, could Internet search engines such as that of Google, video sites such as YouTube and social networks such as Twitter also fall under this heading, either now or in future?
2. Does this mean that these providers of online services can conclude contracts with telecoms and Internet providers for quicker and better relaying of their bits and bytes, in exchange for payment of termination rates?(1)
3. Does the Commission perceive there to be a danger that, by purchasing priority on the Internet, large and rich providers of online services may reduce opportunities for smaller and new providers? Would this not damage the Internet's capacity for innovation?
4. Can the Commission this time comment on the Netherlands Government's objections to ETNO's plan: 'Termination tariffs may constitute an obstacle to the suppliers of services and applications continuing to offer their services and developing new services. At the same time an automatic deduction system whereby costs are passed on by means of termination tariffs is likely to result in economically less efficient outcomes than tariffs charged directly to end users'?(2)
5. Why does the Commission, in its proposal for the EU's position at the forthcoming World Conference on International Telecommunications in Dubai, say nothing about net neutrality?(3) Will the Commission put forward a supplementary proposal guaranteeing net neutrality?


Answer given by Ms Kroes
on behalf of the Commission

Managed services provide access to applications and content with a certain quality of service level. An internet service provider (ISP) may conclude commercial agreements with content providers to ensure that technical properties of specific content or applications are controlled from end-to-end. Certain applications require a specific quality of service (QoS) level, including television (IPTV), video on demand or some business services, such as virtual private networks (VPN). However, not all services referred to in the question require controlled quality.

Electronic communications operators should be able to market managed services. However, in order to protect the Internet's capacity to innovate, the provision of such services should not be to the detriment of the quality of the "best effort" Internet. Moreover, the Commission is committed to maintain the Internet as an open platform to innovate for all providers, including small and emerging providers. In this respect, the Commission's position resonates with the position expressed by the Government of the Netherlands on ETNO's proposal. Generally, the Commission believes that the ITRs are not the appropriate forum for setting compensation and tariff systems.

The Commission's proposal (COM/2012/0430 final - 2012/0207 (NLE)) seeks to ensure that there is no extension of scope in relation to the existing International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs), in particular in relation to matters related to the Internet. The absence of any specific ITR provisions does not prevent the EU to take regulatory or legislative actions in this area.

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