25 October 2015

Urgent: Net Neutrality in EU under Threat; Please Write to your MEPs Now

The long saga of net neutrality in the EU is approaching its end, and things aren't looking good.  The compromise text contains some huge loopholes, which I've written about elsewhere. The key vote is on Tuesday, so there's still time for EU citizens to write to their MEPs. 

You can find contact details for all MEPs on the SaveTheInternet.eu site; those in the UK can also use WriteToThem.com.  Here's what I've just sent - please feel free to use its idea, but don't just copy and paste: MEPs will rightly disregard it.

The Internet has risen more rapidly and had more influence on society than any preceding technology. At the heart of its success lies an obscure technical feature: net neutrality. Simply put, it means that all traffic is treated equally. That level playing field has allowed innovation to flourish, and startups to create new industries in a way never seen before.

As you know, on Tuesday the European Parliament votes on new rules that supposedly enshrine net neutrality in Europe. In fact, those proposals contain such serious shortcomings that they are likely to have the opposite effect, and will undermine net neutrality.

I would therefore like to urge you to vote in favour of amendments that would return the text to a form nearer the earlier one approved by the European Parliament, which was far superior. In particular I would like to ask you to support the amendments specified here:

In a surprising turn of events, the US has passed strong net neutrality laws (https://www.whitehouse.gov/net-neutrality). If the EU does not follow suit, it will threaten digital innovation in Europe, and hamstring its entrepreneurs, thus ensuring that the digital gulf between the EU and US widens, rather than narrows. For this and other reasons, it is vital that the amendments indicated above are included in the final text.

Thank you for your help.