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Consumer Groups Applaud Decision by OECD on Internet Principles

News Release
Consumers Union/Consumer Federation of America
December 13, 2011

Washington, D.C. – Consumers Union (CU) and the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) today applauded the decision of the Council of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to adopt the Communiqué on Principles for Internet Policymaking as a recommendation.

This decision gives the Communiqué, which embraces principles that are critically important to ensuring the health and continued growth of the Internet, official status. Among the most important principles the groups found highlighted in the OECD Communiqué are the following:

  • It focuses on actions to promote openness and the global free flow of information online.
  • It seeks to promote robust competition in the provision of high speed broadband Internet. Such competition is likely to result in more affordable prices for consumers, as well as providing increased geographic coverage of broadband internet.

We also agree that the best way to develop Internet policy in today’s rapidly changing environment is through transparent, multi-stakeholder convenings that seek to create a balanced approach between rights and obligations on the Internet.

In addition, we believe that privacy rules online must be based on globally recognized principles that would empower individuals to exercise greater control over the way their data is collected and shared online.

At the same time, the consumer groups noted that the OECD Committee on Information, Computer and Communications Policy continues to work and make progress toward resolving issues that were a source of concern to them in the Communique.  Thus, turning the Principles for Internet Policymaking into a recommendation at this moment not only binds member states, but it affirms the collaborative decision making process that is vitally important to developing global consensus on Internet policy.

Contact: Mark Cooper (CFA) 301-384-2203 markcooper@aol.com
Ioana Rusu (CU) 202-462-6262 irusu@consumer.org