Is net neutrality incompatible with traffic management policies? Here is another briefing paper on the Telecoms Package, written by myself and a colleague, Benedetta Brevini. In the paper, we suggest that a stronger role should be given to national and European regulators to monitor and oversee discriminatory practices by network operators, in order to protect citizens' interests.
We believe that it is essential for policy-makers to guarantee the neutrality of the network, as the Information Society Commissioner, Viviane Reding, has said.
We consider how ‘bandwidth management' is different from ‘traffic management', and how in the new telecoms environment of ‘traffic management', the problem facing the regulators will entail disputes arising between content providers and network operators, which gives them a different set of regulatory issues from the traditional, purely network-based, issues.
Finally, we consider how the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was able to address such an issue when it arose in the US, compared with the powers that EU regulators would have (or not) under the proposals currently in the Telecoms Package. The paper is released hereunder a Creative Commons Licence. This means that you are free to download and read it, but if you refer to it or the ideas within it, or quote from it in any article, whether an essay or a published work, you must credit Monica Horten and Benedetta Brevini of the University of Westminster.
Net neutrality vs traffic management policies A briefing paper on the Telecoms Package Second Reading is available here
Benedetta Brevini is a PhD researcher at the University of Westminster, and on the editorial board for the Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture (WPCC). Her PhD research, entitled Towards PSB 2.0 : applying PSB ethos to online media in Europe is investigating the policies developed by European Member States and PSBs institutions to bring public service broadcasting ethos to the new media environment. Benedetta studied law (Bachelor of Law and LLM) at the University of Modena, Italy and journalism in Milan (Degree in Journalism). She holds a Master of Science in Media Regulation from the London School of Economics. She has been working as a journalist in Milan, New York and London for CNBC and RAI. Her research interests include European and international media and communication policy, new media regulation, freedom of speech law, media and politics.