Council of Europe Proposes 'Internet Treaty'

Lora Bentley

The United States is not the only country debating the virtue and vice of net neutrality. reported Monday that participants in the Internet Governance Forum proposed an Internet treaty that would codify 12 principles, including an international approach to addressing cyber security concerns and an agreement between nations to "sustain the technological foundations that underpin the web's infrastructure." The proposal would also protect individual freedom of expression and the equality of all Internet traffic regardless of network.


From the proposal:

The fundamental functions and the core principles of the Internet must be preserved in all layers of the architecture with a view to guaranteeing the interoperability of networks in terms of infrastructures, services and contents.

The story says the proposal was offered by members of the Council of Europe, which exists to promote democracy and human rights in Europe. But just as other countries are wary of giving the United States unilateral control of the Internet, those outside of Europe don't necessarily want this proposal to be the final word on Internet governance.


As Oxford Internet Institute's William Dutton has said:

Everyone's worried about national governments asserting regulatory authority over the Internet.

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