The following letter has been signed by both the Julia group as well as We Rebuild:
Paris, September 16th 2009 – We Must Protect Net Neutrality1 in Europe! Organizations from all around Europe share their concern of seeing Net Neutrality being sacrificed during the conciliation procedure of the directives of the EU Telecoms Package. They sent this letter to the Members of the European Parliament, urging them to take decisive action in order to guarantee a free, open and innovative Internet, and to safeguard the fundamental freedoms of European citizens.
We Must Protect Net Neutrality in Europe!
Open letter to the European Parliament
Net neutrality has been an indispensable catalyst of competition, innovation, and fundamental freedoms in the digital environment. A neutral Internet ensures that users face no conditions limiting access to applications and services. Likewise, it rules out any discrimination against the source, destination or actual content of the information transmitted over the network.
Thanks to this principle, our society collectively built the Internet as we know it today. Except in some authoritarian regimes, everyone around the globe has access to the same Internet, and even the smallest entrepreneurs are on equal footing with the leading global enterprises. Moreover, Net neutrality stimulates the virtuous circle of a development model based on the growth of a common communication network that enables new uses and tools, as opposed to one relying on investments in filtering and controlling. Only under such conditions is Internet continuously improving our societies, enhancing freedom — including the freedom of expression and communication — and allowing for more efficient and creative markets.
However, Net neutrality is now under the threat of telecom operators and content industries that see business opportunities in discriminating, filtering or prioritizing information flowing through the network. All around Europe, these kind of discriminatory practices, detrimental to both consumers and innovation, are emerging. No court or regulator seems to have adequate tools to counter these behaviors and preserve the general interest. Some provisions introduced in the Telecoms Package could even encourage such practices.
We who have signed this open letter urge the European Parliament to protect the freedom to receive and distribute content, and to use services and applications without interference from private actors. We call on the Members of the Parliament to take decisive action during the ongoing negotiation of the Telecoms Package in order to guarantee a free, open and innovative Internet, and to safeguard the fundamental freedoms of European citizens.
We encourage European non-governmental organisations to sign this open letter to the members of the European Parliament. If you want to sign this open letter then go here and sign up. Your response and support would be much appreciated.
The Julia group is a non profit organisation from Sweden working for a free and open internet and We Rebuild is a decentralized cluster of net activists who have joined forces to collaborate on issues concerning access to a free internet without intrusive surveillance.
We Must Protect Net Neutrality in Europe! – Open Letter to the European Parliament
Call For Participation During the Conciliation of the Telecoms Package
Jeremie Zimmermann: Telecoms Package Innovation-Hostile