Feeds

Broadband minister asks ISPs to better 'regulate' industry

UK.gov enlists Sir Tim Berners-Lee to make noises about 'open web'

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Communications minister Ed Vaizey is calling on ISPs to beef up their commitments to providing UK customers with information about how they manage online traffic.

At a meeting attended by broadband firms BT, TalkTalk, BSkyB and Virgin Media yesterday, the minister approved of the industry's efforts to agree to "greater transparency for their traffic management policies," according to the Financial Times.

Google, Skype, Yahoo and Facebook representatives were also at the meeting, alongside officials from communications watchdog Ofcom.

The ISPs have agreed to acknowledge the Broadband Stakeholder Group's best practice code, which was announced earlier this week. UK.gov has been calling on the industry to self-regulate the system.

"The challenge ahead is to build a common view on how we safeguard the benefits of the open internet whilst also ensuring ongoing investment and innovation," said BSG boss Antony Walker.

"It is important that this is based on the realities of what is happening in the UK market, rather than what is happening elsewhere in the world."

In the US, the government's communications regulator has sought to mandate so-called "net neutrality". The only trouble there is that the Federal Communications Commission's first official rules on net neut have pleased no one.

Vaizey, whose opinions on net neutrality have wavered in the past few months, said yesterday that Sir Tim Berners-Lee had been asked by ministers to work alongside ISPs on guidelines to help broadband companies expand their commitment "to cover managing and maintaining the open internet".

ISPs have been mulling a two-tier system where connections to the internet are slower for some customers depending on how they use their broadband service.

"The potential for something going terribly wrong is absolutely there," argued Jim Killock of the Open Rights Group.

"The regulator and government do not wish to intervene, for good reason, but industry is not putting forward anything that looks like meaningful self-regulation." ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.