On Net Neutrality

Network neutralityAs many members will be aware, we released a "Pre Public Discussion Document" on Network Neutrality in late December. The purpose of this blog post is to remind members that we are keen on hearing your views on how we intend to proceed on this matter.

Network Neutrality is the sort of topic that InternetNZ is uniquely positioned to address. Our remit is to work for the Internet Community in all of its facets – business, consumer, government, academic and technical, and bring those perspectives to bear on issues. All of those constituent parts of our New Zealand Internet Community have a perspective on an issue like Network Neutrality, and we believe that uniquely robust and insightful solutions can be found through balancing those perspectives.

InternetNZ is also a cause-based organisation in that we stand for the Open Internet. At its heart, Network Neutrality is about ensuring that that openness is preserved, to ensure that the Internet remains a platform for unfettered communication, collaboration and innovation.

We developed this discussion document because we believe that New Zealand will be best served if we start talking about Network Neutrality before there is a problem to solve. We envisage this being the start of an open and collaborative process to develop an understanding of Network Neutrality grounded in the realities of the New Zealand market, and to propose solutions that are also uniquely appropriate to the challenges and opportunities that we face here.

This document is the start of that conversation. It seeks to establish a definition of Network Neutrality to guide discussions; to understand the limitations and challenges of that definition in a New Zealand context, and to establish whether there is any cause for concern about Network Neutrality in the New Zealand market. It does not seek to provide answers these challenges, or propose solutions or outcomes – we anticipate collaborating with the New Zealand Internet Community subsequent to this document to design such responses.

We wanted to give InternetNZ members the opportunity to help us frame this discussion up right. This document is called a pre-public discussion to allow for exactly this refinement before we go out wider than just InternetNZ. We invite comments from members – where have we got this wrong? What have we missed? What other angles on this are relevant to consider, and how best can we work together to develop a common understanding of Network Neutrality? 

We are committed to working through all the feedback we receive on this document, and making it one that we all can be proud of. We would really appreciate all of your thoughts, inputs and advice on how we can shape this review to produce good outcomes for New Zealand, and our Internet. 

To read the InternetNZ pre-public discussion paper on Network Neutrality, click here (pdf).