You’d have to have your head buried on some faraway beach not to be aware of the recent debates in the US about Net Neutrality, the idea that all traffic should be treated equally. I used to use the example of Comcast deciding to block Netflix over their cable network – until Comcast actually did it! And got sued, of course.
There has been a lot of deliberate muddying of the waters on this subject, with telecoms claiming they need the right to restrict in order to survive. Consumers are not so sure about this idea. Enter the Netherlands:
Net neutrality is controversial around the world, with heated discussions on the subject taking place in the United States, Europe and many other regions.
The idea it enshrines is that all internet traffic should be treated equally, regardless of its type – be it video, audio, e-mail, or the text of a web page.
However, ISPs said they need to discriminate because unchecked traffic from some applications, such as games or file-sharing programs, can slow down their entire network for all customers.
As a result many ISPs throttle, block or charge extra for many bandwidth hungry applications and content.
This has become an issue for content creators, who do not want to have a two-tier internet and would like users to enjoy whatever they produce in the best way possible.