List of abbreviations
in Network neutrality

Abbreviations

3G

Third-generation mobile networks, providing voice and data capacity at speeds above 128 kilobits per second.

3GPP

3rd Generation Partnership Project: a collaboration between telecommunications associations to make a globally applicable 3G mobile phone system specification within the scope of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

ADSL

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line: technology for sending data over copper telephone wires, using asymmetrical speeds: higher download and slow uploading speed.

ADSL2+

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line 2+: a later higher speed variant of ADSL.

AKOS

Agencija za komunikacijska omrežja in storitve Republike Slovenije/Communications Networks and Services Agency of the Republic of Slovenia, Slovenian regulator.

ARCEP

Autorité de régulation des communications electroniques et des postes, the French regulator.

ASQ

Assured Service Quality.

BBC

British Broadcasting Corporation: a publicly owned and publicly financed broadcaster (see PSB).

BEREC

Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications: regulatory body set up to help implement 2009 European telecoms laws.

BITAG

Broadband Internet Technical Advisory Group.

BSG

Broadband Stakeholders Group.

BT

British Telecom: UK incumbent.

CAS

content, applications or services.

CAT

Competition Appeal Tribunal (UK).

CDN

Content Delivery Network: a means of caching content closer to the end user’s IAP.

CoE

Council of Europe: socio-cultural organisation established in 1948, currently with 47 members. See also ECHR.

CPP

Calling Party Pays.

CRTC

Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission: the converged federal regulator of broadcasting and telecoms for federal Canada.

DiffServ

differentiated services.

DMCA

US Digital Millennium Copyright Act 1998: a statute which obliges ISPs to take down material whenever they are notified of copyright infringement, under the Notice and Take Down (NTD) procedure.

DOCSIS3.0

Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification: the third generation of these cable broadband data standards.

DoS

Denial of Service.

DPI

Deep Packet Inspection: means by which IAPs can read into the packets of data they carry to analyse the contents as well as the header, in order to prioritise, deprioritise or even block the packets.

DSL

Digital Subscriber Line.

E2E

End to End: design principle governing Internet architecture.

EC

European Commission: executive body of the EU, responsible for developing and implementing the acquis communautaire, the body of EU law.

ECD

Electronic Commerce Directive, 2000/31/EC, which limits ISPs liability for packets they host or carry over their networks without knowledge of the content.

ECHR

European Convention on Human Rights, more formally the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, signed in 1950 by Member States of the Council of Europe.

ECPS

Electronic Communications Service Provider.

EDPS

European Data Protection Supervisor.

EDRi

European Digital Rights Initiative, a non-profit lobbying group on behalf of national privacy and Internet rights groups across Europe.

EEA

European Economic Area.

EFTA

European Free Trade Association.

EINS

European Internet Science.

ERG

European Regulators Group: advisory body set up by the 2002 regulatory framework for European telecoms, the grouping of the Member State NRAs.

ETNO

European Telecommunications Network Operators: association of predominantly incumbent network owners.

EU

European Union, as established in the Treaty of Maastricht 1992 and formerly the European Economic Community (EEC).

European Council

Council of Ministers of EU Member States, responsible for proposing legislation to the European Parliament.

Exabyte

1000 Petabytes (1 million Terabytes or 1 billion Gigabytes).

FCC

Federal Communications Commission: the converged broadcast and telecoms regulator for the US at federal level.

FRAND

fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms, where a monopoly provider of facilities (whether patents and other intellectual property or physical goods) provides access to its competitors.

FT

France Telecom: domestic incumbent in France, also owner of Orange mobile networks and formerly branded as Wanadoo IAP internationally.

FTTx

fibre to the home: high-speed Ethernet-ready transmission wire offered as FTTH (home), FTTP (premises) and FTTC (cabinet – street furniture for telecoms normally available to each neighbourhood, therefore more local than the exchange), FTTrN (to remote nodes), FTTB (to building or basement) varieties.

GB

Gigabyte (1024 megabytes).

Gbps

Gigabit per second (1/8th of a Gigabyte per second, or 128 Mbps).

GCHQ

Government Communications Headquarters.

GSM

Global System for Mobile Communication, also known as 2G: second-generation mobile telephony.

HADOPI

Haute Autorité pour la Diffusion des Oeuvres et la Protection des Droits sur Internet (High Authority for the Diffusion of Works and Protection of (Copy)Rights on the Internet): an agency established under the 2009 French Law against copyright infringement, more formerly known as the loi favorisant la diffusion et la protection de la création sur Internet.

HDTV

high definition television.

IAP

Internet Access Provider: company providing access to the Internet for consumers and businesses. The largest in most Member States is the incumbent telecommunications provider. Mobile networks are also IAPs.

IAS

Internet Access Service.

ICC

Interception of Communications Commissioner.

ICO

Information Commissioner’s Office.

ICT

information communication technology.

IETF

Internet Engineering Task Force: a self-regulating technical standards body.

IGF

Internet Governance Forum: United Nations multi-stakeholder discussion forum initially held in Athens 2006, and to be held annually for at least four years thereafter.

IM

Instant Messenger.

IoT

Internet of Things.

IP

Internet Protocol.

IPTV

Internet Protocol Television: video programming delivered over IP networks rather than broadcast (cable, terrestrial and satellite) networks.

IRG

Independent Regulators Group

ISP

Internet Service Provider

ITRE

Committee on Industry, Research and Energy

ITU

International Telecommunications Union: United Nations body established to coordinate global telecommunications, successor to International Telegraph Union founded in 1865.

IWF

Internet Watch Foundation: UK ‘hotline’ for illegal content reporting, established 1996.

KB

Kilobyte.

Kbps

Kilobits per second.

LLU

Local Loop Unbundling: the regulated process whereby competitors can access the incumbent telecommunications provider’s connections from telephone exchanges to the customer premises, using regulated access prices and conditions.

LTE

Long Term Evolution.

MAU

monthly active user.

MB

Megabyte (1024 kilobytes).

Mbps

Megabits per second.

Member

State Member State of the EU: 28 in total as at 2016.

MEP

Member of the European Parliament.

MNO

mobile network operator.

MPLS

Multiprotocol Label Switching: a standard set for NGNs.

MSG

multi-stakeholder governance: the process by which civil society groups are included in regulatory discussions with governments and corporate interests.

NGA

Next Generation Access: the use of new technologies (such as FTTx) to offer high-speed connections between the subscriber’s premises and the main NGN.

NGNs

Next Generation Networks: all-Internet Protocol (IP) networks.

NGO

non-governmental organisation.

NRA

National Regulatory Authority: in reference to independent national bodies established under national law in the Member States of the European Union, which implement the European communications framework. NRA can also be used to refer generically to any national authority, such as the Canadian CRTC or US FCC.

NTD

Notice and Take Down: regime by which ISPs can avoid liability for potentially damaging content by removing such content on receipt of notice from a third party.

OECD

Organisation for Ecomic Cooperation and Development: a ‘think-tank’ for developed nations, with 30 national members. Membership is limited by commitment to a market economy and a pluralistic democracy. Formed in 1961 and grew out of the Organisation for European Economic Co-operation (OEEC), established in 1947.

Ofcom

Office of Communications Regulation: UK converged regulator of broadcasting and telecoms, established in 2002 and operational from December 2003.

OIAC

The FCC Open Internet Advisory Committee.

P2P

peer-to-peer: usually used in reference to file sharing amongst many peers, an efficient form of many-to-many information sharing as compared to a broadcast model using a central server. P2P is the method of distribution used by Skype, BitTorrent and many other information-sharing programmes.

PECP

provider of electronic communications to the public.

Petabyte

1000 Terabytes (1 million Gigabytes).

PIAS

Providers of Internet Access Service.

PSB

Public service broadcaster, granted special licensing conditions ostensibly in exchange for educational and news programming. Members of European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

QoS

Quality of Service: protocols and standards designed to offer guaranteed QoS have been mooted for many years, but none has yet been successfully marketed on the public Internet.

RFID

Radio Frequency Identification.

RIO

Reference Interconnection Offer.

RPP

Receiving Party Pays.

RTNDP

transparent, non-discriminatory and proportionate.

SDN

Software Defined Network.

SMP

significant market power: measure of dominance in European competition law, with a specific application to telecoms law.

SpS

Specialised Services.

TCP

Transmission Control Protocol.

telco

telecommunications provider: the term normally used for incumbent former national monopoly providers. There are also ‘competitive telcos’ – all other providers of switched telecommunications services except the national incumbent.

Terabyte

1000 Gigabtyes (1 million Megabytes).

TMP

Traffic Management Practices.

UDP

User Datagram Protocol.

UHDTV

ultra-high definition video streaming and downloading.

USO

Universal Service Obligation: for European consumers the right to a 33 Kbps telephone line. The USO will be upgraded as broadband network speeds increase.

VDSL

very high bit rate digital subscriber line.

VoIP

Voice over Internet Protocol: technology to digitise sound in packets sent over the Internet. Its primary advantage is that distance does not affect the cost of the call between two VoIP-enabled phones (or PCs attached to the phone or a data system).

VPN

Virtual Private Network.

W3C

WWW Consortium, a self-regulatory organisation.

Web2.0

social networking applications using blogs, podcasts, wikis, social networking websites, search engines, auction websites, games, VoIP and P2P services. These services, which are based in part on the Ajax mark-up language, makes user-generated and distributed content central to consumers’ internet experiences.

Wifi

standard for WLAN designed to Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) 802.11a/b/g specification.

WIK

Wissenschaftliches Institut für Kommunikationsdienste GmbH: a telecoms economics research institute based in Bonn, well known for its work on behalf of the EC, German regulators and DT and its subsidiaries, and many other clients.

WiMAX

Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access: a broadband wireless technology.

WLAN

Wireless Local Area Networks, which often use the Wifi technology standards.

WWW

The World Wide Web: a set of standards including those for graphical user interfaces using hypertext mark-up languages for displaying Internet information, invented by Tim Berners-Lee, now standardised by the World Wide Web Consortium.

Zettabyte

1000 Exabytes: ameasure of annual network traffic.

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Network neutrality

From policy to law to regulation

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