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

ZDNet - ISPs should not be barred from selling tiered web, according to Europe's digital commissioner Neelie Kroes.

Telecoms providers should be able to sell access to the internet at varying speeds and with differing download limits, Kroes wrote in an article for the French newspaper Libération.

Common ISP practices like throttling the speed of internet access for heavy downloaders or at peak times violate the principle of net neutrality - the idea that no bit of information sent over the internet should be prioritised over another. With The Netherlands passing legislation last year guaranteeing net neutrality, there have been calls for the concept to be enshrined in European law - an idea that Kroes appears to reject.

"On net neutrality, consumers need effective choice on the type of internet subscription they sign up to. Choice should also drive innovation and investment by internet providers, with benefits for all," Kroes wrote in the Libération article published on Wednesday.

Speaking on Thursday, Kroes' official spokesman clarified what she meant by 'choice':