Netherlands becomes first European country to ensure web providers cannot charge more to access certain services. The Dutch parliament has approved a new net neutrality law that will ensure free access to services such as Skype The Netherlands has become the first country in Europe to enshrine the concept of network neutrality into national law by banning its mobile telephone operators from blocking or charging consumers extra for using internet-based communications services. The measure, which was adopted with a broad majority in the lower house of parliament, will prevent KPN, the Dutch telecommunications market leader, and the Dutch arms of Vodafone and T-Mobile from blocking or charging for internet services like Skype or WhatsApp, a free text service. Its sponsors said that the measure would pass a pro forma review in the Dutch senate. Analysts said the Dutch move could shape the evolving European debate over network neutrality and push other countries to limit operators from acting as self-appointed toll collectors of the mobile internet.
“I could also see some countries following the Dutch example,” said Jacques de Greling, an analyst at Natixis, a French bank. “I believe there will be pressure from consumers to make it clear what they are buying, whether it is the full internet or internet-lite.” The Dutch restrictions on operators are the first in the EU. The European commission and European parliament have endorsed network neutrality guidelines but have not yet taken legal action against operators that block or impose extra fees on consumers using services such as Skype, the voice and video service being acquired by Microsoft, and WhatsApp, a mobile software maker based in California. Advocates hailed the move as a victory for consumers, while industry officials predicted that mobile broadband charges could rise in the Netherlands to compensate for the new restrictions. “We support network neutrality,” said Sandra de Jong, a spokeswoman for Consumentenbond, the largest Dutch consumer organisation, based in The Hague. “We don’t think operators should be able to restrict the internet. That would be a bad precedent.” Only one other country, Chile, has written network neutrality requirements into its telecommunications law. The Chilean law, which was approved in July 2010, took effect in May. In the US, an attempt by the Federal Communications Commission to impose a similar set of network neutrality restrictions on American operators has been tied up in legal challenges from the industry.
[[[ *** RESPONSE *** ]]]
This is MERELY the internet. Try ensuring that the REAL LIFE nations are not allowed to charge beyond a certain amount. People are having land alienated or even made bankrupts when they cannot pay extreme assessments while nepotism and GLC collusion destroy free enterprise and impoverish the population. DO NOT VOTE PLUTOCRATS and NEPOTISTS into political power. The whole point of this article makes it look like life is fine. But this is just on the internet, abuses and loopholes occur throught REAL LIFE SOCIETY at every level, there is no neutrality IRL (in real life) and that should be the concern of everyone, net neutrality is fine but without REAL LIFE neutrality, we still live in a prison.