December 14, 2009 – Malaysia’s national news agency reported Monday that the country’s government is committed to Net neutrality principles and plans to continue to take steps to ensure internet service providers do not restrict a user’s access to content or ability to use various applications.
Deputy Information Communication and Culture Minister Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum said the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission has been applying open access or Net neutrality principles to those with telecommunication licenses under a 1998 communications law.
Malaysia’s move demonstrates the principle of Net neutrality, or what it means to ensure that the internet remains open in the years to come, is something many countries are grappling with outside of the United States.
Broadband Census News reported last month that the European Union was moving forward with its own set of internet access requirements. Under the proposed EU rules, “national telecoms authorities will have the powers to set minimum quality levels for network transmission services” so as to promote Net neutrality or “net freedoms” for European citizens.
According to the Malaysian state press agency Bernama, Salang said net neutrality was a “principle proposed for internet service providers and users, advocating no restriction on content, site or platform, on the types of equipment that might be attached, and on the mode of communication allowed.”
Salang added the principle requires that equal services and communications be made available to users according to the levels of internet access they are subscribed too. The deputy minister said Malaysia’s “government would continue monitoring to ensure that internet service in the country was not monopolized by certain ISPs.”
In the United States, the Federal Communications Commission has proposed regulating Internet access to support Net neutrality principles.