OFE has long been an advocate for Open Standards – which the Internet heavily relies on. In recent years, we have also been pushing for the adoption of strong Net Neutrality principles. We have been active participants in the European debates on the ‘Connected Continent’ telecom package, and through OpenForum Academy ran a number of projects to encourage an informed debate on the issue, for example with an analysis of Net Neutrality rules in EU Member States.
For the DSM a single cross-Europe infrastructure should be seen as an imperative, providing the level playing field for competition and acting as a catalyst for citizen and user innovation and adoption. The Connected Continent legislative package presented in 2013 provides the basis for such legislation. Recognising the pressure to maintain the status quo from incumbent suppliers
should not provide a reason to delay or to seek to modify business models – all that will happen is that Europe will be asked to compete sub-optimally in a Global market.
Building on that core network infrastructure is the fundamental need to preserve the openness of the internet. OFE has consistently supported the position formed of the European Parliament which has sought to ensure in statute the principles of net neutrality. Essential in that legislation is one of clear, unambiguous definitions, particularly to notoriously difficult and potentially grey areas of ‘specialised services’.