Dutch claim net neutrality is working
A year or so in and the news from Europe's net neutrality front line appears to be all good. Last year Holland became the first EU country to bake net neutrality into its telecommunications law. Now, no doubt much to the fury of Dutchwoman Neelie Kroes, the EU digital agenda commissioner who has cautioned against any 'jump-the-gun' net neutrality laws in Europe, the official feedback is that the Dutch experience seems to be going to plan.
According to the Dutch institute responsible for the report - the SEO - the law has been a big assist for small content providers busy developing new products and services, since it has the affect of limiting the ability of ISPs to shape internet traffic or give priority to specific applications. That's meant lower barriers to entry for innovative new players, it claims
However, Commissioner Kroes wants European telecoms law to sanction upstream charging for better than 'best effort' service by ISPs which she seems to see as a 'quid pro quo' for her ratcheting down on roaming.
The SEO has gone out of its way to point out that if ISPs were given a green light to charge more for priority access they might end up being be less inclined to compete and innovate.
It also claims that where access costs are kept low in a competitive market, users make greater use of Internet services, helping smaller application and service providers expand their positions. This dynamic also benefits ISPs because end-users - by getting services they want - become more willing to pay for additional capacity.