The EU Debate on Net Neutrality: What About Zero-Rating?
21(5) COMPUTER AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS LAW REVIEW, 2015, 115-119.
9 Pages Posted: 30 Jun 2017
Date Written: June 2015
The debate over network neutrality (‘net neutrality’) is moving into the realm of the concrete. New issues are already challenging regulators and antitrust authorities. Among them, one recently gained momentum: “zero-rating”, i.e., a type of positive price discrimination, resulting in operators not charging end-users for accessing data volume linked to specific applications or internet services. According to some National regulators zero-rating is unlawful as de facto it could discriminate independent content but, at least in Europe, we miss guidance at the EU level. In our view, it is at the very least debatable that punishing a company for offering free data access or lower prices is beneficial to consumers.
Keywords: Comparative law; EU law; Internet service providers; Net neutrality; Price discrimination; United States; Zero rating.
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