IAMAI toughens stand on Zero Rated Services

25 Aug,2015

By A Correspondent


In its recent response to the DoT paper on Net Neutrality, the Internet and Mobile Association of India [IAMAI] has clearly and unambiguously opposed zero-rated plans of any type. In its submission made last week IAMAI has held that “these plans will ultimately harm Internet content and service providers by limiting competition among them, and, by extension, limit consumer choice”. Such plans will also “allow the operators, if given control of which apps/services to push to consumers, to discriminate and privilege certain web services over others, and throttle innovation”. The association has also reiterated that it does not support any plans that violate principles of net neutrality “especially paid or unpaid prioritization or other discriminatory practices”.


IAMAI has also reacted strongly against the proposal to license domestic and national VoIP, as suggested by the DoT paper. The association contends that such a regime will be directly against consumer interest and against future innovations. The association contends that licensing any domestic and national Internet based voice communications services would be impractical especially since such services in many instances are offered as bundled services. The association also feared that licensing one type of internet service may be the beginning of a “slippery slope” and may lead to a clamour for so called “same service same rules” for other internet services.


The association has also cautioned that while traffic management is a technical right vested with telecom operators, this right should not be misused to charge customers differentially for different types of data. Technical requirements of traffic management should also not be used to promote operators own services at the cost of other services, the association cautioned.


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