Members of the European Parliament (MEP) implored US politicians to save net neutrality, describing the policy as fundamental to fair competition and free speech.
In a letter to members of the US Congress, a group of MEPs said rules set in the US had a global impact and a repeal of net neutrality legislation would endanger the principles of access to free information and fair competition.
The statement was supported by 149 MEPs (out of a total of 751) and comes as a group of US senators attempt to overturn a controversial vote by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to revoke existing legislation related to the open internet.
Once the FCC publishes its proposed new rules in the Federal Register in the coming weeks, the Senate has a 60-day window to block new measures by a majority vote.
In a statement, MEP Marietje Schaake, who is also VP of the European Transatlantic Legislative Dialogue, called the move to revoke the policy a “historic mistake”, adding: “Internet and the flow of data does not stop at the border and the FCC’s decision has a global impact. A reversal of net neutrality rules by the United States is a threat to the open, free and fair internet.”
“The European Parliament has been a vocal proponent of net neutrality rules within Europe. Today we undertake action to also preserve the open internet in the US.”
In the wake of the FCC’s vote, European Commission officials threw their collective weight behind the protection of the open internet in Europe.