Press review about Net Neutrality

[FinancialTimes] Brussels to soften data protection rules

Brussels will be forced to water down tough data protection rules in a move that will come as a relief to tech groups after many of the EU’s member states called for a softer approach to the privacy push.

The climbdown will be welcomed by companies that collect large amounts of personal data, such as Google and Facebook, which have lobbied furiously against the proposed regulation, as well as the US government.

[TorrentFreak] “Six Strikes” Anti-Piracy Scheme Starts Monday

The much-discussed U.S. six strikes anti-piracy scheme is expected to go live on Monday. The start date hasn’t been announced officially by the CCI but a source close to the scheme confirmed the plans. During the coming months millions of BitTorrent users will be actively monitored by copyright holders. After repeated warnings, Internet subscribers risk a heavy reduction in download speeds and temporary browsing restrictions. [...]

[PCWorld] European digital rights group pans copyright reform talks

Civil liberties activists attending the European Commission's new copyright talks last week declared the process a "waste of time" and an "outrageous attempt to avoid copyright reform." […]

[ZdNet] Telstra tests P2P throttling, deep packet inspection

Australia's largest telecommunications network is testing methods to curb peer-to-peer traffic on its network. [...]

[TheVerge] The internet is an 'essential' part of life, says German high court

A German federal court this week ruled that consumers have the right to monetary compensation whenever their internet service is interrupted. In what German media outlets are calling a "landmark" ruling, a judge at the Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe determined that the internet is an "essential" part of life, echoing similar decisions from courts in France and Finland. [...]

[ComputerWorldUK] Will Neelie Kroes Defend or Destroy EU Net Neutrality?

I have a lot of time for Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the European Commission with responsibility for the Digital Agenda. [...]

Changing the overall speed or data cap does not affect net neutrality; neither does a scheme that allows the users to prioritise certain kinds of traffic on a temporary basis (for example video streaming.) What must not be allowed is for ISPs to offer packages that permanently downgrade certain sites or certain applications. [...]

[Techweekeurope] US Data Privacy Campaigners Support Brussels Against US Interference

Whilst the US government and a number of major corporations like Facebook lobby the European Commission to water down its data privacy proposals, other American groups are telling Brussels officials to press on with the plans.

[HuffingtonPost] Eva Blum-Dumontet: 29c3: Hacking Politics

Every year at the end of December, computer hackers from all over the world gather in Germany - this time in Hamburg - for the Chaos Communication Congress, four days of talks, meetings and workshops. [...]

[CIO] EU Commissioner Kroes Won't Be Bullied on Net Neutrality, Says Spokesman

[...] In her blog on Thursday, Kroes said consumers should be free to make their own choices about their Internet subscriptions, but that this "does not preclude consumers from subscribing to more differentiated, limited Internet offers, possibly for a lower price."

La Quadrature du Net interpreted this to mean that "Kroes supports the creation of a fragmented Internet, banning innovation and opening the door to unacceptable censorship."

[ZDNet] Net neutrality? Let the market decide, says Europe's digital chief

Europe's digital chief Neelie Kroes supports the right of ISPs to choose how they manage internet traffic that flows over their networks. [...]

[Zdnet] France puts net neutrality law on ice

Were some expecting too much from a net neutrality roundtable organised by France's digital economy minister? Perhaps - but the lack of action and the promise of more discussion has clearly disappointed. [...]

[RFI] French internet provider blocks ads in face-off with Google

France's Digital Economy Minister Fleur Pellerin was to hold crisis talks on Monday over a decision by the country's second largest telecoms company, Free, to block online advertisements. [...]

Analysts believe the company is seeking to put pressure on US internet giant Google to play a bigger role in financing telecom infrastructure. [...]

Free's move contradicts the idea of a democratic internet, Jérémie Zimmermann of the online citizen advocacy group La Quadrature du net told RFI. [...]

[NYTimes] France Rejects Plan by Internet Provider to Block Online Ads

In a potential test case for Europe, the French government on Monday ordered a big Internet service provider to stop blocking online advertisements, saying the company had no right to edit the contents of the Web for users. [...]

“Should users be held hostage to these commercial negotiations? That is not obvious to me,” said Jérémie Zimmermann, a spokesman for La Quadrature du Net, a group that campaigns against restrictions on the Internet. [...]

[ArsTechnica] France's second-largest ISP deploys ad blocking via firmware update

France's darling indie ISP, Free, has shaken up the French Internet landscape yet again: in a quiet firmware update released Wednesday evening, the company added an ad blocking option to its Freebox router and activated it by default. [...]

Meanwhile, Benjamin Sonntag, of the French online advocacy group, La Quadrature du Net, sent Ars screenshots while using Free in Paris, showing that ads on the French tech news site Numérama were not blocked, but ads on the site of French newspaper Le Monde were. [...]