KABEL NORGE KONGRESS 2011 – OSLO. As a cable operator Telenor provides broadband services to its customers, and is a member of Kabel Norge, but it is also a telco with its own ways of thinking.
Explaining the company’s position to delegates Harald Krogh, who has responsibility for Wholesale & Regulatory in Telenor Norge said the company had been attacked when it first said it wanted to prioritise certain types of traffic. “We have to invest and then we discuss who will pay and at the end of the day it has to be the users. It is not only the end user, but also the content providers, like NRK goole and Facebook are also our clients.” He added that some of the largest companies now ran their businesses from the internet. “Telenor would like to develop and remain free, but that’s free in the case of free speech and not a free beer.”
Earlier, Willy Jensen, director of post and telecommunications regulator PT, said some of the debate around net neutrality was misguided. Describing some consumer representatives as “uniformed enthusiasts” Jensen said there had to be a realisation that some management of the internet was not only required, but already in progress. What was wrong were actions such as that as the mobile company Netcom, which effectively consigned Skype to its higher paid tiers.
At the same time traffic management should be possible, to have a system to prioritise traffic, because when the capacity is misused you should do something so that your premium users get what they have paid for.”
Picking up Jensen’s theme Caroline van Weede, secretary-general, Cable Europe pointed to the transparent way that Virgin Media made its customers aware of its traffic management policy.
Detailing the conversations that have taken place with European regulators, Van Weede said her best guess was that Commissioner Neelie Kroes would not be proposing any further legislation. “Mrs Kroes has made the debate quite dispassionate and her clinical approach is quite helpful,” she said. Adding that if an operator were to misbehave the regulator would be able to step in.
Following a roundtable attended by Cable Europe and three European cable operators earlier this month, a second roundtable is due, with a full report expected in May.