Feeds

Ofcom stays in neutral on net neutrality

It couldn't happen here, says chairman

Boost IT visibility and business value

Ofcom has no intention of lording it over the net neutrality debate, the head of the regulator made clear yesterday.

The regulator seems set on a hands-off attitude, leaving content providers to negotiate premium deals with access providers if they want, while giving them the option of using competition law if they feel they're being turned over.

Ofcom chairman Lord Currie of Marylebone dismissed the US clamour over net neutrality during a Q/A following the annual Ofcom lecture in London today.

Asked what the regulator's view on the debate was, Currie said: "It's as well it hasn't come over here, as it's a somewhat confused debate."

If service providers were investing in their networks, it was clear they would want to make a return on their investment, he said.

"[I] think it's a thoroughly bad idea not to charge for quality of service," m'lud declared.

Asked by the moderator, BBC correspondent Nick Higham, why the debate was so much more high profile in the US, Lord Currie suggested this was because the application of competition law in Europe was tougher.

"I do see competition law as the answer to many of the issues," he said.

Speaking to El Reg after the debate, he added that the crucial point was whether providers were attempting to force content providers to pay. A content provider going to a service provider and asking for a guaranteed level of service was OK, he said. Access providers strong arming content providers into paying, was not.

What the net neutrality lobby had done, said Lord Currie, was to turn an essentially economic issue into a moral crusade. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
EE plonks 4G in UK Prime Minister's backyard
OK, his constituency. Brace yourself for EXTRA #selfies
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.