By Interoute

Reports from today’s panel suggest that the various camps on net neutrality remain at loggerheads, with the content providers, ISPs, government and the regulator failing to agree on what a code of practice should be. Matthew Finnie, CTO of Interoute, comments: “Despite the principles on which the Internet was formed, it is naïve to assume that the Internet is a ‘right’. If Ed Vaizey, Ofcom, Tim Berners-Lee, the ISPs, et al, are looking for a code of practice on how to manage this issue they would be wise to look towards the energy market. We have multi-tiered energy, so why not the same for the Internet?

“Content providers that tend to use up vast amounts of capacity to deliver their content to consumers have a right to make money from the services they distribute. And the success of the Internet is in large part due to this content distribution. However, this right to make money from the services they provide should be no different for those that deliver the infrastructure behind the Internet, which enables content to be distributed.

“The Internet is mainly funded by private money (with the exception of BT), and the fact that a significant amount of investment and expertise is required to keep the Internet operating at the right level can’t be ignored.

“A net neutrality model is a neutral market model, which will restrict investment and innovation thereby leading to a stagnant Internet. This investment needs to be encouraged to allow for innovation and the provision of the right services to consumers. If multiple tiers of internet provision are what it takes to enable investment and innovation in the infrastructure, and the content providers to continue developing and providing content profitably, then so be it.”