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Agenda and Reading List: International trends in Network usage Fees, October 4, 2023

The discussion will cover the network fees situation in South Korea, European Parliament’s considerations on net neutrality, and other global trends in telecom.

You’re invited to join us for a virtual discussion on the ‘International trends in Network usage fees’. Responses to a recent consultation by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India have made certain assertions about the regulatory consultation on network fees discussions in Europe and South Korea.

Please register to attend by filling out the form here. Note: registration doesn’t guarantee participation. 

In Europe, the assertion is that the European Parliament has called for the establishment of a policy framework where large traffic generators contribute fairly to the adequate funding of telecom networks without prejudice to net neutrality. The European Commission has also launched a consultation this year on ‘the future of the connectivity sector and its infrastructure’, which includes deliberations on the fair contribution as well.

When it comes to South Korea, the assertion is that courts in South Korea have rejected Netflix’s arguments of not paying the network fee on the grounds of Net Neutrality, accepted that the Internet is a two-sided market and that the court has agreed “on the need to assess unjust enrichment by Netflix at the expense of SK Broadband and will appoint an assessment organization.” There’s also an allegation that as per a law in South Korea, network fees are imposed on online companies with 1 million users per day and more than 1 percent of South Korea’s internet traffic. It has also been asserted that some of the large traffic generators have started paying network fees to telecom operators. 

Given the references to international developments, MediaNama is hosting a discussion with key global experts to help understand what exactly is going on globally and why, and address key assertions regarding the global situation made by some Indian stakeholders. 

Date:  4 October, 2023 

Platform: Zoom

Conference Timings: 7:00- 9:00 PM KST / 3:30- 5:30 PM IST / 12:00-2:00 PM CET / 6:00-8:00 AM EDT


 International trends in Network usage fees: 
  • The European debate on network fees
  • South Korea’s experience implementing network usage fees
  • Network fee models: Their utility and challenges


  • Carl Gahnberg, Director of Policy Development and Research at the Internet Society
  • Barbara van Schewick, Stanford University
  • Professor KS Park, Korea University School of Law
  • Thomas Volmer, Head of Global Content Delivery Policy, Netflix
  • Alissa Starzak, Vice President, Global Head of Public Policy, Cloudflare
  • Bhupinder Jit, Public policy professional

We have also prepared a round-up of the top reads to familiarise you with some of the key themes that will be a part of the discussion.

Understanding network fees:
  • Network Usage Fee: A Misplaced Assertion [Read]
  • A Shared And Open Internet Vs. ‘Exclusive Gardens’: Imposing ‘Network Costs’ On OTTs A Bad Idea? [Read]
  • Network Usage Fees: A Tax in Search of a Purpose [Read]
  • Network Fees Could Splinter The Internet: Stanford Law Professor Barbara Van Schewick Responds To TRAI’s Consultation On OTT Regulation [Read]
  • Fair share: the definitive guide [Read]
European Debates on Network Usage Fees:
  • European Union’s Proposal To Get Big Tech To Pay Interconnection Fee Threatens Net Neutrality [Read]
  • BEREC preliminary assessment of the underlying assumptions of payments from large CAPs to ISPs [Read]
  • Network Usage Fees Will Harm European Consumers and Businesses [Read]
  • Europe’s biggest telecoms are trying to trick the European parliament into Endorsing their proposal to force websites to pay them without proper evaluation. MEPs shouldn’t let them.  [Read]
  • Biden Administration Weighs in on European Commission’s “Fair Share” Telecoms Consultation [Read]
  • Six Talking Points From The EU’s Exploratory Consultation On OTT Players Sharing Investment Costs With Telcos [Read]
  • Why Is The EU Asking Big Tech And Telcos To Submit Their Investment Plans? [Read]
  • European Union’s proposal to get Big Tech to pay interconnection fee threatens net neutrality [Read]
Korea’s implementation of network fees:
  • South Korean internet service provider sues Netflix, reigniting debate on Net Neutrality [Read]
  • How bad policy led South Korea into a Net Neutrality nightmare [Read]
  • In Net Neutrality Setback, South Korea Lays Service Quality At Content Providers’ Feet [Read]
  • Internet traffic tax or net neutrality? [Read]
  • Should 23 Million South Koreans Pay More For Broadband When Only 5 Million View Netflix? [Read]
The Indian context:
  • TRAI’s consultation on differential pricing agreements. [Read
  • TRAI’s consultation paper on licensing of internet services. [Read]
  • Why TRAI wants to regulate OTT platforms. [Read]
  • Airtel introduces differential pricing for type of mobile Internet usage. [Read]
  • The International Telecommunications Union’s recommendations for a collaborative OTT regulatory framework. [Read]
  • The Internet Freedom Foundation’s concerns with how the Telecom Bill, 2022, approaches OTT regulation, through ‘straitjacketing’ diverse Internet platforms. [Read]
  • On the gamble of the “sending party network pays” principle in OTT regulation. [Read]
  • Telecom companies are currently required to contribute to the Universal Services Obligation Fund (now called the Telecommunication Development Fund). [Read]
  • Issues associated with imposing network fees on OTT players. [Read]
  • EU’s Exploratory Consultation On OTT Players Sharing Investment Costs With Telcos. [Read]
  • MediaNama’s comments to TRAI on traffic management and an advisory body for Net Neutrality [Read]
  • TRAI’s net neutrality open house discussion on traffic management practices in 2020 [Read]
  • Net neutrality in India: From rules to enforcement — By Smriti Parsheera [Read]

Remember, this is a curated, invite-only discussion that requires you to sign-up, so don’t forget to apply to attend. MediaNama hosted this discussion with support from ADIF, Google, Meta and Netflix.

Note: The post was edited on September 26, 2023 at 1:58 PM to correct a speaker’s credentials.  

Written By

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.



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