Entanet Says Network Providers Should Decide for Themselves on Net Neutrality

Leading UK communications providers, Entanet, has called on ISPs to take their own stance with regards to net neutrality – and for UK and other non-US providers to start developing their own approach and strategy around the issue.

In the latest article on its opinions web site (http://opinion.enta.net/) , the company highlights the potential dangers posed by plans in the US to impose net neutrality on the market and calls on Internet providers in Europe and beyond to start setting the agenda.

Recent developments in the US have brought the adoption of proposals that would compel broadband providers to stop blocking or slowing down certain types of lawful traffic, such as P2P file sharing, and ensure that they provide an equal service to all users, regardless of their type of usage. ISPs in the US are against the move, as it would effectively take the management of traffic out of their hands and – as there would be a need to provide higher levels of bandwidth for all users at all times – increase their costs.

Advocates of net neutrality argue that it is the best way to ensure that the Internet can be used as a platform for innovation and development of services. It could be argued, for example that software as a service would have a much better chance of success if we had enforced net neutrality.

Entanet however agrees with observers who have pointed out that bandwidth is not unlimited and that the industry would be better left to regulate itself. Users do after all, have the right to switch providers at any time.

In the article, Neil Watson, Head of Operations at Entanet, states: “Whilst Entanet agrees with the fundamental principles of net neutrality and agrees with an open and honest approach to network and traffic management, we believe that it should be the network providers who should decide how best to manage their networks and traffic. It should not be decided by government on a one-size-fits-all approach. If a customer does not like the ISP they are using or the package they are on they are free to move to an alternative provider.”

He also argues that the US should not be left to set the tone on net neutrality for the rest of the world and calls on interested parties elsewhere to start addressing the issue themselves. “We have concerns over the idea of net neutrality being led by the US. We would opt for a global discussion, enabling countries such as the UK to have their say.” Watson notes that, while there may be a need for a tightening of regulations and stricter enforcement of current rules, many of the US proposals are covered by safeguards that are already in place in the UK and Europe, so there is a danger that we will duplicate effort or impose unnecessary levels of bureaucracy. These issues, he contends, should be addressed closer to home.

To read the article in full visit: http://opinion.enta.net/