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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

YouTube up in arms over T-Mobile throttling video streaming to 480p

YouTube up in arms over T-Mobile throttling video streaming - SlashGear: "Binge On offers unlimited video streaming that won't be counted against a subscriber's data allowance but at the expense of pixel resolution. To be specific, videos are reduced to 480p quality, not even 720p. At first glance, that might be an understandable compromise to keep Binge On users from clogging up bandwidth and affecting everyone else.

 YouTube's beef, however, is that, like many other content providers, it didn't have any choice in the matter. It is not one of the 20 or so video streaming services that T-Mobile has announced to be exempt from the data cap, a list that includes Netflix, HBO, Hulu, and more. And yet YouTube videos automatically get throttled to 480p.

In short, not only do users get lower quality videos, those videos still count against their data allowance." 'via Blog this'

Indian Regulator Temporarily Suspends Facebook’s Free Basics: ToI

Indian Regulator Temporarily Suspends Facebook’s Free Basics, Says Report | TechCrunch: "Now the Times of India reports that Reliance Communications, one of Facebook’s partners, has agreed to temporarily halt Free Basics on its network after receiving a request from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

 This is a big deal because the TRAI is set to hold a hearing on net neutrality next month before issuing a final decision that may force Free Basics to undergo major revisions to continue operating in India.

 A Facebook spokesperson said “We are committed to Free Basics and to working with Reliance and the relevant authorities to help people in India get connected,” but did not confirm if the service has been temporarily halted. TechCrunch has also contacted Reliance and the TRAI for comment.

Information about Free Basics is still available on Reliance’s site.

The company, India’s fourth-largest telecom operator with about 110 million users as of June, made Free Basics available to all its subscribers last month." 'via Blog this'

Monday, December 21, 2015

FCC wants details on AT&T, Comcast, T-Mobile data plans

FCC wants details on AT&T, Comcast, T-Mobile data plans | Reuters: "FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler told reporters that commission staff sent letters on Wednesday to AT&T Inc, Comcast Corp and T-Mobile Inc "to come in and have a discussion with us about some of the innovative things that they are doing."

The letters, which the FCC made public on Thursday, seek meetings with "relevant technical and business personnel" by Jan. 15.

"As you may be aware, concerns have been expressed about these programs, for example, some have argued that sponsored data unfairly advantages incumbent content providers," the letter to AT&T said. "We want to ensure that we have all the facts to understand how these services relate to the commission's goal of maintaining a free and open Internet while incentivizing innovation and investment from all sources."" 'via Blog this'

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Zero rating: TRAI now seeks views on differential data pricing in India

Net neutrality: TRAI now seeks views on differential data pricing - IBNLive: "According to a TRAI official, some of the operators are offering plans where they give discounted tariffs to access certain applications like WhatsApp, Facebook and the like, and there are certain platforms that allow access to certain websites free of cost.

Airtel Zero is an open marketing platform that lets customers access a variety of mobile applications for free, with data charges being paid by start-ups and large firms. Similarly, Facebook's allows access to certain websites without mobile data charges.

TRAI said the objective of offering such schemes is claimed to be the desire of various service, content or platform providers to enable users, especially the poor, to access certain content on the Internet free of charge.

The stakeholders can send back their comments on the consultation paper by December 30 and counter comments by January 7." 'via Blog this'

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Harold Feld: Amazingly Short (For Me) Quickie Reaction To Oral Argument

Wetmachine » Tales of the Sausage Factory » My Amazingly Short (For Me) Quickie Reaction To Oral Argument: "FCC was pushed fairly hard on its rationale for including interconnection when it had decided not to classify the service identified in the Verizon case (the one between edge providers and the broadband access provider).

At the same time, both Judge Tatel and Judge Srinivasan seemed open to the FCC’s response that the rule as adopted looks to whether the BIAS common carrier is behaving reasonably to fulfill its promise to the subscriber that it will deliver to the subscriber “all, or substantially all” content available on the Internet.

So I still give the FCC a reasonable chance on being sustained on this as well.

Wireless More Murky, But FCC Win Still More Likely Than Not. All the judges pressed both sides fairly hard on the wireless issues. " 'via Blog this'

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Specialized service Comcast Streaming TV: Really that bad for net neutrality?

Comcast Streaming TV Service: Really that bad for net neutrality? | BGR: "We already knew that Comcast’s new service didn’t count against its data caps, but the devil is in the details. “Stream TV is a cable streaming service delivered over Comcast’s cable system, not over the Internet.” In other words, Stream TV is an IP TV service, but it’s delivered over the same managed network as Comcast’s standard TV service rather than over the Internet.

 It might seem harmless enough, but we can now see that Comcast is exploring — and finding — new ways to deliver services that get around the FCC’s net neutrality guidelines in ways the company’s rivals cannot compete with and will not ever be able to compete with. Not only does Comcast have an advantage over rivals like Sling TV, it has an advantage that is impossible for rivals to overcome. 

Whereas T-Mobile’s “Binge On” bends net neutrality by offering subscribers access to T-Mobile’s streaming TV service without having that data count against their caps, it also at least includes some rival services in its scheme. This is still a huge problem for net neutrality, but it is without question the lesser of two evils. Can Stream TV rivals use Comcast’s managed network to deliver service that won’t count against Comcast customers’ data caps? Of course not, and so Comcast will always have the upper hand here." 'via Blog this'

Monday, November 30, 2015

Net Neutrality: 2016 deadlines

Net Neutrality: document pool II - EDRi:

"30 November 2015: Entry into force of the Regulation.

30 April 2016: the entire Regulation is applicable except for certain provisions (mainly on roaming).

31 December 2016: Deadline for Member States to repeal national measures (including self-regulatory measures) which go against Article 3(2) or 3(3).  Must be notified to the Commission by 30 April 2016.

30 August 2016: Deadline for publishing BEREC’s implementation guidelines.

30 April 2019: European Commission’s report to the European Parliament and the Council reviewing Article 3 (safeguarding of open internet access), Article 4 (transparency measures for ensuring open internet access), Article 5 (supervision and enforcement) and Article 6 (penalties), including proposals for amendments, if necessary. The Commission will have to issue a report every 4 years as of 30 April 2019." 'via Blog this'

Friday, November 27, 2015

BEREC June 2016 draft implementation of the new TSM rules

Press release - BEREC is ready to assist with the implementation of the new TSM rules: "within nine months after the Regulation has entered into force, BEREC will lay down guidelines for the implementation of the obligations of NRAs related to the supervision, enforcement and transparency measures for safeguarding open Internet access.

BEREC will publish draft net neutrality guidelines for public consultation following the June 2016 Plenary meeting.

BEREC will then take account of comments received before publishing the final guidelines by the end of August 2016." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Regulation (2015)2120 - it's OFFICIAL!

EUR-Lex - 32015R2120 - EN - EUR-Lex: "Regulation (EU) 2015/2120 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2015 laying down measures concerning open internet access and amending Directive 2002/22/EC on universal service and users’ rights relating to electronic communications networks and services and Regulation (EU) No 531/2012 on roaming on public mobile communications networks within the Union (Text with EEA relevance)

OJ L 310, 26.11.2015, p. 1–18 " 'via Blog this'

These 3 judges hold the fate of net neutrality in their hands

These 3 judges hold the fate of the Internet in their hands - The Washington Post: "That 2014 net neutrality case is known as Verizon v. FCC, and Tatel is the sole returning judge this time, drawing that much more attention to his role in the last round.

 Because both sides are claiming to have properly interpreted Tatel's 2014 ruling, everyone's watching to see how Tatel himself will now view this case.

 Much as we shouldn't read too much into Williams's conservative leanings, however, we shouldn't conclude that Tatel necessarily has any greater insight to offer on the case than either of his colleagues. Nor should we assume that Srinivasan will side with the FCC just because he's a Democratic appointee who stands to defend his position on the Supreme Court shortlist if he sides with the Obama administration." 'via Blog this'

Monday, November 23, 2015

Comcast May Have Found a Major Net Neutrality Loophole

Comcast May Have Found a Major Net Neutrality Loophole | WIRED:

"Stream TV won’t count towards the 300GB data limit imposed on some Comcast broadband users. Since users who exceed that 300GB threshold are charged an extra $10 for every extra 50GB they use, up to $30 per month, the $15-a-month Stream TV offering could be appealing to users worried that other video services, such as Netflix or Sling TV, will eat through their data allotment.

You're watching TV on your computer via your broadband connection.

But Comcast says technically Stream TV is being offered via cable.
Comcast says this isn’t a violation of network neutrality law because, although you’re viewing Stream TV on your computer via your Comcast broadband connection, the service isn’t technically offered over the Internet, but over Comcast’s cable television network, much like its Xfinity Xbox 360 service, which allowed Xbox users to view video that didn’t count against their data limits and was shuttered last summer." 'via Blog this'

Friday, November 20, 2015

FCC's Wheeler: T-Mobile's 'Binge On' no threat to net neutrality

SNL: FCC's Wheeler: T-Mobile's 'Binge On' no threat to net neutrality | SNL: ""I think that it's clear in the open Internet order that we said we are pro-competition and pro-innovation," he said. "Clearly, [Binge On] meets both of those criteria. It's highly innovative and highly competitive."

Wheeler added that he now "chuckle[s]" at the doomsaying that preceded the net neutrality vote earlier this year, which maintained that wireless and wireline broadband providers would have to seek permission for any new innovation or offering.


Wheeler added that the FCC will be "watching the Binge On product, keeping an eye on it" to ensure that it stays in keeping with the open Internet order's general conduct standard, which holds that carriers may not unreasonably interfere with the connection between an edge provider and a consumer.

It was this element of the rules that troubled Republican Commissioners Ajit Pai and Michael O'Rielly, as they noted during a separate press conference." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Recently monthly stats - 11k views, Explorer disappeared, 28% of you rich enough to use Apple products

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Chancellor's speech to GCHQ on cyber security & ISP blocking

Chancellor's speech to GCHQ on cyber security - Speeches - GOV.UK: "Internet service providers already divert their customers from known bad addresses, to prevent them from being infected with malware.

We will explore whether they can work together – with our help – to provide this protection on a national level.

We cannot create a hermetic seal around the country – indeed it wouldn’t be in our interests to have one – but with the right systems and tools our private internet service providers could kick out a high proportion of the malware in the UK internet, and block the addresses which we know are doing nothing but scamming, tricking and attacking British internet users.

Let us try to get to the point where all the internet service providers will as a matter of routine divert known bad addresses.

By doing so, we could fundamentally alter the economics of cyber crime against UK citizens and businesses." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Not neutrality please, we're British!

I attended an extraordinary event yesterday seemingly taking place in a vacuum, though as it was on a wind-blown North Atlantic rock, perhaps that is how it always is when the British discuss Europe or the Internet.
It is five years since Ed Vaizey got himself in big trouble by declaring he was against net neutrality, then realizing he had flatly contradicted Tim Berners Lee, retracted and tried a typical Whitehall fudge by claiming it was all "open Internet" even though, when TBL announced it was net neutrality, reluctantly agreeing.
But hey presto - not neutrality became the task he had set for the neo-corporatist institution beholden to both he and industry, the Broadband Stakeholder Group. As their chair Richard Hooper is always pleased to announce: "The term “Open Internet” is one that the digital minister, Ed Vaizey and I agreed some years ago was a better term for the UK than the American term – net neutrality."
Really? At the IGF last week, the rest of the world, except for telcos and neoliberals, was happy to debate net neutrality.
The event yesterday was the announcement after five years, that the UK industry was pleased to award itself trebles all round for its wonderful non-implementation of net neutrality with no official (sic) complaints. I have some notes from the event which may be of historic interest. I should note that WIK conducted the actual review and it is the WIK footnotes and page numbers to which the notes refer. But do note from Hooper's comments last month just what the client thinks of net neutrality regulation as opposed to self-congratulation:
"The UK approach, which has proved to be eminently successful, has required no statutory regulation" (ha!) but "our approach has been undermined in some ways with the Connected Continent Regulation passed by the EU in the summer. This regulation is directly applicable in the UK. Unfortunately, they have pursued a more prescriptive approach than is necessary or desirable in the UK and potentially hinders the ability of network providers to provide innovative services".
So herewith the notes made yesterday:
TMP Transparency Code 2011 – Open Internet Code of Practice 2012
WIK (2015) Review of the Open Internet Codes
1.       Value of self-reg
a.       Claims ‘dialogue…just as important as the Codes themselves’ Everyone agrees that Vaizey impetus was vital in telling BSG through Hooper to fix it.
2.       Effectiveness re. Uk users
a.       “more than 90%” what’s exact figure?
b.      “overwhelming majority” full access – i.e. v .little blocking (mainly spam)
c.       Zero rating?
d.      No stats on consumer awareness – Potemkin self-regulator?
3.       Compliance with CC
a.       Obvious problem with throttling ‘unreasonable’ traffic management during all hours people home from school/work
b.      Clear issue of zero-rated and specialised services…
c.       Adult content filters esp. crude TalkTalk blocking
4.       Future reform re. co-regulation
a.       Merge the 2 Codes together
b.      Address points in 3 above
BSG will merge Codes by May 2016 – in line with BEREC
Open Internet Forum – no “official complaint” (P18) – that’s from industry players
No consumer complaints – but that was always nonsense – footnote 111, p36 blows whistle “Code neither addresses remedies nor penalties”. Worth checking on OIF - no website, membership only, no transparency. One informal resolution: SIP ALG tied router configuration UK NOF standards issue – ITSPA unhappy as VOIP not improved but degraded by dodgy implementation.
No research into whether consumers knew about KFIs though Ofcom in 2013 recommended Code improvements p33 footnotes 99-100 P2P is permitted but must be included in KFIs.“The only organic change” in 2013 was public Wifi use. Other change “more consumer-friendly” in response to Ofcom review.“It’s a shame that Brussels got involved”…
Danny Wilson BBC opposes strict net neutrality re. Netherlands/Slovenia – given BBC inclusion in Indian zero rating, that’s to be expected. 
Huw Saunders (Ofcom) – going forwards, need to test consumer awareness of KFIs – notes QoE research. “Need to broaden to look at a wider range of services….increasing importance of video…TV-like experience” He cites 60% figure on video traffic – both broadcast & YouTube type. KIT (KCOM) of course started this in 1999 in Hull. “The economics are better in 2015…” Ben Wallace (Ofcom) co-chair with Frode on net neutrality group. DCMS very vague on whether there’s to be a need for co-regulatory legislative provision – maybe that can be shared with kiddie filter in late 2016.

Monday, November 16, 2015

2015/11/12 Facebook remarks to 'dialogue on "zero rating" and network neutrality' #IGF2015

2015 11 12 A dialogue on "zero rating" and network neutrality Main Meeting Hall:

Kevin Martin" I think there is two overarching, critical important points to put in context for this debate.

The first, it is that in Facebook's Free Basics programme that we're trying to listen and respond to the concerns and critics that -- concerns that are raised.  For example, there was concerns about whether or not we were confusing people with the original name of We have changed the name to make sure we're not -- this is not access to the full Internet, it is access to a site and set of basic services. We have renamed the programme. We have made sure as I mentioned earlier an open platform that others will participate in and we have made other changes in response to the concerns and so we're responsive.


The second, final question, is this working? In the end, that's important in terms of trying to get others online.  As Josh mentioned in his remarks, you end up with more data. Our initial data demonstrates it is. It is accelerating the rate of adoption.

The operators that participate are seeing a 50% increase in the rate of adoption of people subscribing. Second, we see a 50% conversion rate, for people that try this for the first time, 50% of them will become paying subscribers of the Internet within 30 days. " 'via Blog this'

'Open Internet', not neutrality and bad faith actors

Chris Marsden: "I think the final point to make is that changing terms is really awkward.  So Governments are in favor of the open Internet but not Net Neutrality.  A lot of actors are bad faith actors.  So myself, Konstantinos, in particular a lot of corporate actors, do not favour full Net Neutrality. They started saying so two years ago when it became inevitable there will be a law in this case.  Konstantinos and I are honest enough to say we don't favour Net Neutrality as you classically term it and therefore we will not agree with everything you say.  That doesn't mean you can't go forward to have a declaration on a model law.  And I think others who are not in favour might want to follow our example if they want to be honest with themselves.

LISE: I wanted to tease you because you're saying you're not in favor of full net neutrality still you're putting out some principles that are helping or not being Net Neutrality but at the same time we see these as tools to provide Net Neutrality.  Are you playing with words?  Or are you serious when you are saying you are against it.  CHRIS MARSDEN: These are tools that provide an openness to competition on the Internet and provide the opportunity for content providers.  And of course as an academic, I study Net Neutrality.  I can't be seen to be a proponent.

#IGF2015 Not Neutrality remarks on zero rating, public service actors

MODERATOR: if zero rating violates Net Neutrality, is it the ISP Telco or content provider who violates the law as does the government that promotes it instead of or as part of public policy?  That came from Alejandro. 
CHRIS MARSDEN: Why not?  So, Net Neutrality is typically applied to ISPs.  Specifically aimed at ISP because it is performed by Telecom regulators and licensed by the Telecom regulators. This isn't any effective regulation of Net Neutrality as with the exception of Chile but most will be regulating ISPs and I think that's how the regulation system works in Norway. 

On the zero rating point I want to say two things in answer to the last point on that.  One, is that we have to be very careful how we define what public service might be in the case of zero rating.  Wikipedia thinks it is public service.  It may or may not be but I think we should have awe discussion about that.  Probably in the dark. And I think that is important particularly because most countries in the world including Brazil, including the United States as well, have public service media in terms of broadcasting and they will be very keen to be part of this zero rated package which could change the equation on how attractive zero rating is given that things like non-exclusivity and FRAND terms are very very well relied upon by public service broadcasters.

Further remarks on 'not neutrality' at #IGF2015: Ofcom, BEREC, WIK

From the transcript Q&A (cleaned up):
"I want to say something about the fact that when we talk about mobile and the threats to SMS messaging, revenues from WhatsApp and other services, albeit it's not clear if WhatsApp will remain legal in the U.K. if our current legislative proposal goes through. 
It is really interesting when you look at the history of public WiFi and the development in 2002-2003 and going forward, the kind of regulatory problems that did emerge which we just talked about, to some extent treating WiFi as an equivalent to Telecoms. I think that was a real danger then and it remains a danger now.  In the U.K. we were worried about media piracy and that brought the need for everyone to register. In Brazil it's about anonymity and the Constitution and all of these things are limiting the amount of connectivity.  
One of the big issues that will remain for WiFi, less so with real mesh networks, but is the cost of backhaul.  And I understand that's a more fundamental problem in the U.S. than the rest of the world because it's not regulated (albeit everyone says Title II means the world is going to end and the sky is going to fall). But that will always be a fundamental issue.  But piracy and backhaul costs are a important element to that.  On the auction point I'm sure Vint can say something to the fact that Net Neutrality was in the auctions in the U.S.
"CHRIS MARSDEN: In markets where consumers had ration slow access to the Internet, they would pay for specialized services?  But where they already had fast access to the Internet, they wouldn't?  Is that more or less the take away? RENÉ ARNOLD: I think it would be a bit too short to use that as a summary because we had also in Sweden, we had about 25% of consumers who would also be willing to purchase prioritized services, however I think that would be in a slightly different direction and more probably more specific to a specific streaming service or something like that.  Whereas in the Czech Republic, this group, the same group was 41%.  So essentially we find the same affect but the group size varies.
"CHRIS MARSDEN: This is very interesting research.  In the U.K. when Ofcom researched this area, the research company had to explain to the consumers what Net Neutrality is.  So that in an initial set of results, people didn't care about Net Neutrality, it turned out essentially they didn't know what it was. Once they found out what it meant and what violations would be... he knows the research.  Consumers freaked out and started saying unpleasant things about Telecoms company.  Did you find that also in the qualitative research there was a need to explain what it is to people before the penny dropped and they understood the impact? 
"RENÉ ARNOLD: We found quite the same affect actually.  And I think it is also quite logical in a way to expect that from consumers.  Now what we did in the qualitative research in particular, we had a sort of three step process.  First we just confronted them with the word, Net Neutrality and we let them freely associate with that. Then, we gave them a very short explanation of what it was and what it meant.  Had another round of associations and then we really engaged in a discussion on the affects on different alterations, etc and discussed that with them.  But I also wanted to add that what we also did in the quantitative work is we had half of our consumers did receive an information package on the affects of Net Neutrality, whereas the other half of our respondents did not.  And what was quite interesting to see was that because we and BEREC it was very, very important for us as well as for BEREC to frame this information as neutrally as possible, so we were presenting both positive and negative affects of traffic mapping and what we managed to do was, we did find or we did get an educational affect of that information package.  So we had also questions to test whether people actually understood more or less after the information or whether those with the information understood better what Net Neutrality was, than those without, and we could significantly prove that that was the case.  However, interestingly, it did not alter their attitudes so much towards traffic management, nor did it alter their purchase intentions significantly.

FRAND "Not Neutrality" - my remarks at Dynamic Coalition on Net Neutrality

From the transcript:
"CHRIS MARSDEN: I should say it's a tremendous effort Luca put together to have the Dynamic Coalition for three years and put together a book in each of the three years. That's fantastic.  Thank you for that.  
And we go on to zero rating.  It is true to say that zero rating has been down around since the dawn of the consumer Internet and those who remember AOL and British Telecom used to have a content provision company which gave you zero rated content.  It was known as open wound but I think it was known to the rest of the world as open world.  They closed it down pretty quickly.
We have had zero rating for a very long time.  And one of the issues I think the zero rating and Net Neutrality is that even if it is pretty clearly established that Net Neutrality as a principle actually is something which would apply to all ISPs when it comes to zero rating it does become more interesting to look at the role of dominant and less dominant companies and newcomers to the market that offer zero rating is very often being considered and bearing in mind at a early stage talking about regulation, as a company that perhaps would have less fierce zero rating applied to it.  Case in point, the video tron case which is open in Canada, ongoing at the moment, or if are those in the United States, the T Mobile streaming of music which appears to be a rousing less suspicion than it would do if it was a larger company.
So having established and agreeing with Vint that there are different ways in which Net Neutrality is applied in different places.  I think I have a solution which I think works across the board. I share this with Primavera and others and I think it also solves the question people ask, why Chris, are you always so critical of Telecom companies but you aren't really a Net Neutrality guy?  
I think there should be two associated rules and the two associated rules are taking us back to the origins of common carriage.  1. no exclusivity.  So it would not possible for a company together way content provide tore sign up to an exclusive deal that couldn't be offered to other content providers or other companies.  So you wouldn't have pre basics only being offered on an exclusive basis by one mobile operator for instance, in Brazil.  And the second rule is fair reasonable, and nondiscriminatory pricing.  If I wanted, as a mobile carrier, for instance, to carry Wikimedia zero, that's not a great example.  FACEBOOK Zero, then I or Free Basics, I would be offered that as anybody else would be.  The same would apply in reverse.  If was a content provider that wanted access to a platform, it would be at a same price.  
The reason why Lise is frowning is, it is not Net Neutrality.  It's a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) way of carrying content or the ISP to get access to that content but it isn't Net Neutrality. However, it would, I think, solve most of the problems, particularly with zero rating.  I think also it is very specifically to do with specialized services, which we haven't discussed yet and may discuss later.  But I do accept it is not Net Neutrality as classically foreseen.  
I just make one final point on that, though, which is that we do, it has been said, many definitions.  I think one of the fun things is when you look around the world, particularly the European Union and the United States, we don't use the term Net Neutrality in our laws anyway.  We talk about open Internet.  Who could be opposed to the open Internet?  Send up the one person opposed - there are two people standing up anyway, but it's not their fault! - who are opposed to the open Internet.  But the European regulation very, very specifically avoided the term, Net Neutrality.  Neutrality is used I believe, once in the regulation and of course it is the old sore, which is even more of a cliche in Internet regulation than the open Internet, which is technological neutrality is used.  But Net Neutrality is not used in the regulation.
So I may not be a Net Neutrality guy but it turns out the laws that are supposed to establish Net Neutrality, are also not Net Neutrality laws."

Friday, November 13, 2015

EU calls for open internet at global conference while net neutrality fight rages in Brussels

EU calls for open internet at global conference while net neutrality fight rages in Brussels | EurActiv: "“Why don't you trust me? I've given you my word,” Oettinger asked MEPs.

Some MEPs who joined Ansip in Brazil said although the EU delegation came out publicly in favour of open, non-discriminatory internet rules, it's still unclear whether the EU net neutrality law will meet that standard.

German MEP Julia Reda (Pirate Party) said Oettinger didn't address zero rating during the debate in Parliament, and instead only promised to review the law if necessary once it is in effect.

“The fight for net neutrality in Europe is not over, but the debates at IGF are making it clear that other countries like Brazil, that are themselves working on implementing their net neutrality laws, are watching closely what the EU is doing,” Reda said.

“The standards BEREC will set for net neutrality in Europe may end up having an effect on our chances for an empowering and non-discriminatory Internet in the entire world.”" 'via Blog this'

Thursday, November 12, 2015

T-Mobile is writing the manual on how to fuck up the internet: The Verge

T-Mobile is writing the manual on how to fuck up the internet | The Verge: "Of course, "free" isn’t really free, is it? This scheme is called "zero rating," and people like Susan Crawford have been warning us for a while about the risk it poses for the open internet. The only reason Binge On and Music Freedom sound like such a great pro-consumer deal is because the top four mobile ISPs — Verizon, AT

Friday, November 06, 2015

BEREC has until September 2016 to issue guidelines on EU Regulation

Excellent summary by EParliament Research Service alerted me to the unexpected footnote - the 9 months for BEREC STARTS on entry into force, three days after publication in Official Journal. So that's 9 months from 3 days after publication later this year (eh?)
Don't expect too much action on net neutrality by NRAs (even Netherlands/Slovenia/Finland) in 2016 while they scratch their heads in BEREC wondering what this all means....
"Article 5(3) 3. By …∗, in order to contribute to the consistent application of this Regulation, BEREC shall, after consulting stakeholders and in close cooperation with the Commission, issue guidelines for the implementation of the obligations of national regulatory authorities under this Article.
∗ OJ: please insert date: nine months after the date of entry into force of this Regulation.
Article 10 Entry into force and transitional provisions
1. This Regulation shall enter into force on the third day following that of its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union.
2. It shall apply from 30 April 2016."

Cloudflare Thoughts on Network Neutrality, the FCC and a Complaints-Based Solution

Thoughts on Network Neutrality, the FCC, and the Future of Internet Governance: In a perfect world: "Today, we are articulating a simple standards on network neutrality to which all ISPs will be held:
Providers should not discriminate against or for any byte flowing across their network

Providers should continue to invest in their networks to provide higher quality of service across the entire Internet
Providers should not offer so-called "fast lanes" that content providers may purchase in order to favor their own content

To monitor compliance with this standard, I have hired a team of 100 investigators who will be fielding complaints around the clock from consumers and businesses about ISPs that fail to live up to these standards. We will take allegations of ISPs that do not follow these standards seriously and investigate them to the fullest extent. Non-neutral networks will be put through the equivalent of a legal root canal. And if we find that our current legal framework does not offer the tools to remedy abuses, make no mistake that we can and will act quickly under our full powers of Title II. To ISPs: you're on notice. To Internet users: we will be vigilant." 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Measuring the Impact of Zero Rating Services in Developing Countries

Measuring the Impact of Mobile Data Services in Developing Countries | Alliance for Affordable Internet: "No matter where you fall on the spectrum of the debate, one thing is certain — facts around the availability and use of zero-rated services are in short supply. At A4AI, we’re tackling on this challenge head on...we’re undertaking an extensive research exercise to answer some key questions:

  • What are the different types data packages available in the developing world? 
  • How common is the zero-rating of specific bundles of services, and what alternative models are out there? 
  • How are people using these zero-rated service bundles? 
  • What content is most popular? 
  • Does this differ from those who access the Internet in a different way? 
  • Do people who use zero-rated services go on to pay for data and explore the whole Web beyond the “walled garden” they are provided for free? 
  • How does this compare to other methods of encouraging people to get online for the first time?" 'via Blog this'

Monday, November 02, 2015 plans to legislate on smut filters after EU net neutrality ruling plans to legislate on smut filters after EU net neutrality ruling • The Register:

"The Prime Minister continued:

I can tell the House that we will legislate to put our agreement with internet companies on this issue into the law of the land so that our children will be protected.

 The EU's net neut rules will turn into regulations within nine months and then be applied across the 28-member-state-bloc by the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC), as well as national regulators and the courts.

Under the measures, it clearly states:

"Any traffic management must be based on objective technical requirements rather than on commercial considerations, and must treat equivalent types of traffic equally.

Based on this new legislation, all content and application providers will have guaranteed access to end-users in the open internet. This access will not be dependent on the wishes or particular commercial interest of internet service providers.

These providers will not be able to block or throttle traffic in their networks or give priority to some particular content or services in exchange for payment."

 Now, the UK government has negotiated an opt-out and effectively beefed-up its censorship stance against ISPs in the UK." 'via Blog this'

Friday, October 30, 2015

EC Statement on Net Neutrality - Oettinger responds to DTelekom boasting

Statement on Net Neutrality - European Commission:

"Although supervisory authorities will not have to approve special services in advance, they will be obliged to carry out the above-mentioned checks, for which they will use specific software and hardware, as well as documents and information they may request from telecommunications companies.

The authorities can and must impose sanctions if companies do not comply with the Regulation.

For internet providers this means that they will only be able to offer special services with consistent quality if they do not diminish the quality and speed of the internet.

If there is insufficient capacity available, they will have to create more capacity or terminate the contract for special services. As a result, start-ups or other users will not actually be ‘forced’ to switch providers because their internet connection has become slower or their capacity has not been increased." 'via Blog this'

Deutsche Telekom chief causes uproar over net neutrality

Deutsche Telekom chief causes uproar over net neutrality | EurActiv: "Höttges' statement on Wednesday (28 October) is a first glimpse of how major telecoms may interpret those services.

He sparked controversy by claiming that specialised services would give a boost to startup businesses. 

“Start-ups need special services more than anyone in order to have a chance of keeping up with large internet providers,” he argued.

“If they want to bring services to market which require guaranteed good transmission quality, it is precisely these companies that need special services. By our reckoning, they would pay a couple of percent for this in the form of revenue-sharing,” Höttges added.

 Simon Schaefer, a private startup investor and founder of Berlin's tech hub Factory, called Höttges' claim “ludicrous”.

“They're creating a toll on anybody that doesn't have the liquidity to finance whatever price they come up with,” Schaefer told EurActiv." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Flashback to 2009 Amendment 166: EParliament 2nd Reading ignores net neutrality

European Parliament ignores net neutrality | Digital Civil Rights in Europe: Not much changes...

Malcolm Harbour: "But the fact remains that any other service limitations which are anti-competitive, and they could certainly include restrictions on access to competitive services like voice over IP, have and can be dealt with by the regulators under the existing framework of competition and access regulation. And that is clear. But what is fundamental is that customer needs to know if there are service limitations and customers may wish to buy a package with service limitations if it is cheaper…There is nothing illegal about service limitations, provided they are not anti-competitive…”

 The initial amendments voted in the first reading by the EP, were back on the European Parliament agenda under the name of Citizens Rights Amendments proposed by Eva-Britt Svensson on behalf of the GUE/NGL Group together with other support from other MEPs.

But besides the amendment that re-instated article 138, all the other citizen rights amendments were rejected by the plenary of the EP. Thus, the Harbour report was adopted and the Trautmann report was rejected." 'via Blog this' Net neutrality escalated so quickly

Google Translate"A commentary by Patrick Beuth: Hardly has the European Parliament decided new network neutrality rules, than Telekom explained the it wants to ask startups to pay at the checkout in future. This has almost slapstick quality.
If it were not so sad, you might certify Timotheus Höttges, the CEO of Telekom, has excellent comic timing. On Tuesday MEPs had voted in the European Parliament majority for a softening of net neutrality. Just one day later Telekom published a Statement of Höttges, in which he pours the worst fears of Internet activists into a business plan." 
'via Blog this'

Telefonica welcomes Regulation to protect the Open Internet & Specialised Services

Telefonica welcomes Regulation to protect the Open Internet and put an end to Roaming charges | Public Policy Blog:

"BEREC has to lay down guidelines for the implementation of the obligations of NRAs in regard of the supervision, enforcement and transparency measures for ensuring an open access to the Internet. They will need to do that keeping in mind that network quality and the possibility to offer innovative services are prerequisites for allowing us to deliver what our customers and other European businesses need to be able to take full advantage of the digitalization of our societies and economies. It is in the interest of Europe, its consumers and companies, that communication and broadband providers across the continent will also in the future be able to be trusted partners for solutions around connected driving, smart cities, e-health and many other services of the Internet of Things. For such future applications, many of which we cannot even imagine yet, network management and service differentiation will be required and the regulation takes the appropriate forward-looking approach to allow for these." 'via Blog this'

Telekom will put a cash till on Internet video/gaming/coms and monetize it from start-ups

Google Translate: \Not shy to shout sbout screwing start-ups?

"Why do we need these special services on the net? The Internet is varied and produces services that no one has ever thought of until recently. This begins with video conferencing and online gaming, and going on telemedicine, the automated traffic control and self-steering cars up to integrated production processes in the industry. Together, these services that they have other, sometimes higher quality requirements than the simple browsing or the e-mail that may arrive a few milliseconds later. A videoconference for example, should not come at peak hours in the network to a halt. Therefore it must be possible that the data-sensitive services in traffic get priority. 

Even today, the quality differentiation in the network has long studied practice. Users can decide for themselves how much service they want and what this service is worth: for example, costs more space for extra-mails, as well as advanced search features at Xing and LinkedIn or videos in HD instead of SD. In future, it will just give the option of booking a service for a few euros more assured quality. Quality differentiation is by no means a revolution in the network, but the natural evolution. 
Teams of specialist services argue small providers could not afford them. The opposite is true: Just start-ups need special services in order to compete with the big Internet providers at all. Google and Co. can afford global server farms, thus bringing the content closer to customers and improve the quality of their services this way. The can not afford to Small. Do they want to bring services to market, in which a good transmission quality must be guaranteed, they just need special services. According to our ideas, they pay for it as part of a revenue sharing of a few percent. That would be a fair contribution for the use of infrastructure. And it makes for more competition in the network.
'via Blog this'