Network Neutrality

This online tutorial is designed to help explain our policy brief: Network Neutrality.

As noted in our policy brief “Network Neutrality“:

The Internet has become an indispensable tool for users around the globe and a fundamental facilitator of innovation and economic growth. Demand for Internet connections with greater bandwidth is unlikely to subside. Even now, some network operators must use congestion-management and traffic-shaping techniques to keep their networks running smoothly. As a result, some commentators worry that network operators are technically able to use traffic-management practices to give preferred treatment to certain data streams. Others are concerned that practices meant to increase revenues might block competing content or give unfair advantage to some content over others. They see these practices as problematic, especially when the practices intentionally discriminate against certain kinds of content delivery to the detriment of end users. This has led to larger public concerns that these kinds of practices jeopardize the open and transparent principles of the Internet.

Network neutrality or “net neutrality” is often used as a broad label in public policy and regulatory discussions concerning these issues. Net neutrality, however, is a wide-ranging term that can mean different things depending on one’s point of view. Discussions about net neutrally, for example, often touch on concerns about freedom of expression, competition of service and user choice, impact on innovation, nondiscriminatory traffic management practices, pricing, and overall business models. From this net neutrality dialog, some believe that policy and regulatory measures are necessary to preserve the open Internet and ensure that it remains an engine for innovation, free expression, and economic growth. The Internet Society believes that focusing on the outcome of network management practices rather than the technical or policy measures employed to deliver that outcome will facilitate necessary flexibility in network operations.

View this tutorial to learn more about this topic.


This online tutorial is designed to help explain our policy brief: Network Neutrality.

Network Neutrality: Module 1

Network neutrality is a complex and controversial topic and is an important part of a free and open Internet. Enabling access, choice, and transparency of Internet offerings empowers users to benefit from full access to services, applications, and content available on the Internet.

Join the conversation with Internet Society members around the world