Patrice Riemens on Fri, 4 Apr 2014 13:18:31 +0200 (CEST)

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[Nettime-nl] [Fwdfyi: <nettime> Net Neutrality: A Great Step Forward for the Free Internet!]

Sorry voor het Engels, maar toch de moeiete waard om kennis van te nemen -
en te vieren, eventueel.
Groet aan allen vanuit 'La France profonde'

---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: <nettime> Net Neutrality: A Great Step Forward for the Free
From:    "Felix Stalder" <>
Date:    Thu, April 3, 2014 15:20

Thanks to an impressive grassroots campaign an important battle was
one today. Felix

Net Neutrality: A Great Step Forward for the Free Internet!
Submitted on 3 Apr 2014 - 11:46

Brussels, 3 April 2014 ? Today the European Parliament adopted in first
reading the Regulation on the Single Telecoms Market. By amending the
text with the proposal of amendments made by the Social-Democrats (S&D),
Greens (Greens/EFA), United Left (GUE/NGL) and Liberals (ALDE), the
Members of the European Parliament took a historic step for the
protection of Net Neutrality and the Internet commons in the European
Union. La Quadrature du Net warmly thanks all citizens, organisations
and parliamentarians who took part in this campaign, and calls on them
to remain mobilised for the rest of the legislative procedure.

After years of inaction and only a few months before the end of her term
in office, EU Commissioner Neelie Kroes1 presented a proposal for the
regulation of the Telecom Single Market in Europe in September 2013.
Although it claimed to contain a real defence of Net Neutrality, it in
fact introduced a version of the principle that stripped it of all real
meaning. Despite much criticism2, Kroes rushed the adoption by the
European Parliament so that it could be voted before the European
elections of May 2014.

This positive vote is the direct result of a very strong citizen
mobilisation3 and the constructive work of Amelia Andersdotter
(Greens/EFA ? SE), Catherine Trautmann (S&D ? FR), Petra Kammerevert
(S&D ? DE) and Marietje Schaake (ALDE ? NL). The adopted text contains a
rigorous definition of Net Neutrality and grants it a normative scope4.
While allowing telecom operators to develop offers of Internet access
with a quality of service optimised for specific applications that could
not run effectively on the so-called "best-effort" Internet, this text
provides a good framework for "specialised services" that ensures
non-discrimination between the providers of such applications5.

Support La Quadrature du Net!

Even if some amendments that aimed to give the text greater coherence
and clarity or lay out stronger enforcement mechanisms were not adopted,
the text passed today represents a clear victory for the protection of
the free Internet. This is especially true in comparison of Neelie
Kroes' original proposal. La Quadrature du Net warmly thanks all
citizens and organisations who took part in this campaign for Net
Neutrality, as well as the MEPs who fought hard for the free Internet in
the last days of their mandate.

In the coming weeks, as the legislative procedure on the regulation will
proceed to its next phase, we must maintain the greatest vigilance. It
is now to the Council of the European Union (which, along with the
European Parliament, is the EU co-legislator), to deliberate next 5 and
6 juin of this year. As national governments are easily influenced by
dominant telecom groups, continued public interest and mobilisation is
now necessary to ensure that the improvements to the text achieved today
are not dismantled6.

?Today's victory on Net neutrality is the most important one for the
protection of freedom online in Europe since the rejection of ACTA in
July 2012. The EU Parliament made clear that the Internet commons should
be free of corporate capture, and remain a space where freedom of
communication and innovation can thrive. We warmly thank all
organisations, citizens, and members of the EU Parliament who worked to
achieve this result. We should now all remain watchful for the remainder
of the procedure, as the text now goes to the EU Council where many
national governments will seek to undermine Net neutrality provisions so
as to please their homegrown telecom oligopolies. Even though we won
today, the fight for the free Internet continues!? concluded Félix
Tréguer, co-founder of the advocacy group La Quadrature du Net.

    1. Neelie Kroes is the European Commissioner for ?Digital Agenda?.
In the months following her appointment as Commissioner in 2010, her
position on the question of Net Neutrality evolved from unmitigated
support to an alignement with the demands of telecom operators' lobbies.

    2. A leaked criticism of a draft by Viviane Reding's services says
for example that ?such limited possibilities of accessing Internet
content and services of their choice would run counter to the stated
objectives of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.?:
    The European Data Protection Supervisor wrote in a press release
published on 15 November that Neelie Kroes' proposal voids the principle
of Net Neutrality ?of substance" "because of the almost unlimited right
of providers to manage Internet traffic?.

    3. The number of phone calls to MEPs for this vote even surpassed
the one for the final vote on ACTA in 2012.

    4. See articles 2.14, 23.1 and paragraph 1.

    5. See articles 2.15 and 23.2.

    6. For instance, only a few hours before today's vote, the French
government joined the corporate lobbies to support [FR] a definition of
"specialised services" that is incompatible with a real definition of
Net Neutrality an the principle of non-discrimiation. This provides an
idea of what will be the forces at work in the Council. It is therefore
essential not to let this topic leave the public eye and collectively
remind national governments of where the public interest lies in the Net
Neutrality debate.


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