Zero Rating and Mobile Net Neutrality

  • Christopher T. Marsden


Several developed countries have recently legislated for or regulated for net neutrality, the principle that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) should not discriminate between different applications, services and content accessed by their users. This came after 20 years of attempted discrimination between content streams within the walled gardens of both fixed and mobile ISPs, such as AOL in the 1990s, BT Openworld (sic) around 2000 and Vodafone Live/360 in 2002-11, which was intended to challenge the Apple AppStore and Android/GooglePlay. Alongside their walled gardens, these ISPs enforced monthly data caps preventing their customers having unlimited use of the Internet.


Mobile Data Data Plan Internet Service Provider Zero Rating Internet Access Service 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. ABI Research. (2015). 802.11ac Wi-Fi CPE shipments to accelerate in 2015 to reach 71 million units, 22 April at
  2. (2009). Apple Ditches iTunes DRM, Adds Variable Prices, 3G Downloads.Google Scholar
  3. Access Now. (2015). Open Letter to Mark Zuckerberg Regarding, Net Neutrality, Privacy, and Security May 18, 2015 at
  4. Antunes, A. (2015). Mark Zuckerberg Meets With Brazil’s President At the 7th Summit of the Americas, In Panama, Forbes, April 11, at
  5. AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion, 563 U.S. 321 (2011).Google Scholar
  6. Bode, K. (2015). Tone Deaf Zuckerberg Declares Opposition To Zero Rated Apps An ‘Extremist’ Position That Hurts The Poor, from the new-AOL,-brought-to-you-by-Mother-Teresa dept, Tech Dirt: Broadband May 5th at
  7. Brinkmann, M. (2015). Facebook Lite makes a return as a mobile application, Ghacks, January 26, 2015,
  8. Brown, I., & Marsden, C. (2013). Regulating code. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  9. Caf, D. (2014). Zero-Rating Violates Slovenian Net Neutrality Law, Competitive Analysis & Foresight: Policy, Regulation and Strategy in Network Industries, Media and Technology 5 December at
  10. Caf, D. (2015). Another win for net neutrality advocates in Slovenia: AKOS issues new decisions limiting zero-rating, Competitive Analysis & Foresight: Policy, Regulation and Strategy in Network Industries, Media and Technology 22 February at
  11. Cerda, A. (2013). An evaluation of the net neutrality law in Chile, Digital Rights LAC on July 17, at
  12. Chilvarquer, M. (2015). Debate Público Regulamentação do Marco Civil da Internet, Secretaria de Legislativos Assuntos, Ministeria da Justicia, paper presented at Conferência Internacional sobre a Elaboração de Regras de Neutralidade de Rede, FGV Rio de Janeiro, 8 June 2015:
  13. Coates, K. (2011). Competition law and regulation of technology markets. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  14. CRTC. (2011). Telecom Regulatory Policy 2011-703, Billing practices for wholesale residential high-speed access services.Google Scholar
  15. CRTC. (2015). Broadcasting and Telecom Decision CRTC 2015/M26, January 29, at
  16. Cruz, F. C. d. B., Marchezan, J. C., & dos Santos, M. W. (2015). What is at stake in the regulation of the Marco Civil Da Internet? Final Report on the Public Debate Sponsored by Ministry of Justice on Regulation of Law 12.965/2014, Internet Lab, Rua Augusta, 2690, Galeria Ouro Fino, Loja 326 at
  17. De Guzman, N. F. (2014). Zero rating: enabling or restricting Internet access?Google Scholar
  18. Department of Economic Affairs. (2015). Net Neutrality Guidelines May 15th, for the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) for the enforcement by ACM of Article 7.4a of the Netherlands Telecommunications Act 2012: “Besluit van de Minister van Economische Zaken van 11 mei 2015, nr. WJZ/15062267, houdende beleidsregel inzake de toepassing door de Autoriteit Consument en Markt van artikel 7.4a van de Telecommunicatiewet (Beleidsregel netneutraliteit)” at
  19. Doval, P. (2015). Zero-rating plans must be open to all users: DoT panel member, Times of India July 20, 2015, at
  20. Drossos, A. (2015). Guest blog: the real threat to the open Internet is zero-rated content, Web Foundation, 17 February at via
  21. Eisenach, J. (2015). Economics of Zero Rating, National Economic Research Associates, March, at
  22. Europa. (2015). Statement by Commissioner Vestager on announcement by Telenor and TeliaSonera to withdraw from proposed merger, 11 September, at
  23. Facebook. (2015). Participation Guidelines for Internet.Org, undated, at
  24. Fierce Wireless. (2011). Do Usage-Based Pricing Models Work? (September, e-book) at p. 18, see
  25. Freischlad, N. (2015). Soon everyone will be able to afford a smartphone. But what about data? Tech In Asia, Jul 24, 2015 at
  26. Huichalaf Roa, P. M. (2015). La Neutralidad de la Red: El Caso Chileno, Barcelona 3 July, Subsecretario de Telecomunicaciones, Chile, p. 20 at
  27. International Telecommunications Union. (2015). World Telecommunication/ICT Indicators Database, ITU: Geneva 19th edition released 1 July at
  28. Jain, R., Prof., Ravattu, R., Dara, R., & Prakash, P. (2015). Response to TRAI Consultation Paper on Regulatory Framework for Over-the-top (OTT) Services 27th March, Centre for Internet Studies, pp. 11, 17–18.Google Scholar
  29. Law 20.453 of the Republic of Chile, which enshrines the principle of net neutrality for consumers and Internet users’, of 18 August 2010 at
  30. Law No. 12.965, April 23 2014 by the Presidency of the Republic of Brazil, Civil House Legal Affairs Subsection.Google Scholar
  31. Lemley, M. A., & Lessig, L. (1999). Ex Parte Declaration Of Professor Mark A. Lemley And Professor Lawrence Lessig In The Matter Of: Application For Consent To The Transfer Of Control Of Licenses of MediaOne Group, Inc. To AT&T Corp CS Docket No. 99-251 Before The Federal Communications Commission, Washington, D.C. 20554.Google Scholar
  32. Lemstra, W., Hayes, V., & Groenewegen, J. P. M. (Eds.). (2010). The innovation journey of Wi-Fi the road to global success. Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Maillé, P., & Tuffin, B. (2014). Telecommunication network economics: From theory to applications. Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Maniadaki, K. (2015). EU Competition Law, Regulation and the Internet: The Case of Net Neutrality, Kluwer, on the interaction between communications and competition law.Google Scholar
  35. Marcus, J. S., & Burns, J. (2013). Study on Impact of traffic off-loading and related technological trends on the demand for wireless broadband spectrum, prepared for the European Commission Project number: 2013.5370 ISBN 978-92-79-30575-7, doi: 10.2759/19531 at
  36. Marques, C., Tresca, L., Filho, L. A. P., Rielli, M., & Iorio, P. (2015). Marco Civil da Internet: seis meses depois, em que pé que estamos? Article 19, 28 January at
  37. Marsden, C. (1999). Pluralism In The Multi-Channel Market: Suggestions For Regulatory Scrutiny Council of Europe Human Rights Commission, Mass Media Directorate, MM-S-PL [99] 12 Def 2.Google Scholar
  38. Marsden, C. (2010a). Network neutrality: Towards a co-regulatory solution. London: Bloomsbury Academic.Google Scholar
  39. Marsden, C. (2010b). European law and regulation of mobile net neutrality. European Journal of Law and Technology, 1, 2 at
  40. Marsden, C. (2013). Net neutrality law: Past policy, present proposals, future regulation? Proceedings of the United Nations Internet Governance Forum: Dynamic Coalition on Network Neutrality, Nusa Dua Bali, Indonesia, 25 October 2013. Available at SSRN:
  41. Marsden, C. (2015a). Comparative case studies in implementing net neutrality: A critical analysis. Paper presented to 43rd TPRC, 26 September. Available at SSRN: or
  42. Marsden, C. (2015b). Gringo Net: Zero Rating in Brazil. Paper presented June 08 to Conferência Internacional sobre a Elaboração de Regras de Neutralidade de Rede, FGV Rio de Janeiro.Google Scholar
  43. Marsden, C. (2016). Network neutrality. Manchester University Press, forthcoming.Google Scholar
  44. Ministerio da Justicia. (2015). Civil Rights Framework for the Internet in Brazil: Information in English About the Consultation at
  45. Neal, D. (2015). Apple and Samsung dominate smartphone sales, but new entrants snap at their heels, 24 July at
  46. Odlyzko, A., St. Arnaud, B., Stallman, E., & Weinberg, M. (2012). Know Your Limits: Considering the Role of Data Caps and Usage Based Billing in Internet Access Service, Public Knowledge, April 23, p. 15 at
  47. Olsen, P. (2015). This App Is Cashing In On Giving The World Free Data, Forbes, Jul 29, at
  48. Open Internet Advisory Committee. (2013). Policy Issues in Data Caps and Usage-Based Pricing, Economic Impacts of Open Internet Frameworks Working Group; Open Internet Advisory Committee of the Federal Communications Commission: Washington D.C. at at p. 13.
  49. Orange Romania. (2015). No Limit Internet, at
  50. Pahwa, N. (2015). Facebook’s platform is a privacy nightmare: tracks users on partner sites, allows telcos to track, Medianama May 4, at
  51. Prescott, R. (2015). LatAm: Claro Brazil resumes zero-rating plans, RC Wireless on June 18, at
  52. Rossini, C., & Moore, T. (2015). Exploring Zero-Rating Challenges: Views from Five Countries, Public Knowledge, 28 July at
  53. Ruadhan. (2015). it’s got 99 problems but mobile-friendliness ain’t one, Mobiforge, 27 May 2015 at
  54. Smith, J. (2015). Facebook’s free internet initiative is working, Business Insider Intelligence Jun. 5, 2015, at
  55. Sørensen, F. (2014). Net neutrality and charging models, Norwegian Post and Telecommunications Authority NKOM, 11 November at
  56. Sutherland, E. (2012). Corruption in telecommunications: Problems and remedies. Info, 14(1), 4–19. Available at SSRN:
  57. Telegeography. (2015). IP Transit Prices Continue Falling, Major Discrepancies Remain September 09, at
  58. TIM Brazil. (2015). Infinity Offer daily Plan at
  59. Timms, D. (2003). BT folds Openworld into Yahoo! venture, The Guardian, 16 June at
  60. Turk, Z. (2015). Case Study 3: Net neutrality legislation – the case of Slovenia, Annex: pp. 23–31 in Marsden, C. Zevenbergen, B., Marzouki, M., Bygrave, L., Morando, F., Powell, A., Turk, Z., and Salamatian, K. [2015] “Deliverable 4.3: Final Report” Internet Science EINS Project FP7-288021, at
  61. Ungerer, H. (2005). Competition in the media sector – How long can the future be delayed? Info, 7(5), 52–60.Google Scholar
  62. Vallina-Rodriguez, N., Sundaresan, S., Kreibich, C., & Paxson, V. (2015). Header Enrichment or ISP Enrichment? Emerging Privacy Threats in Mobile Networks, paper presented at HotMiddlebox’15 (co-located with ACM SIGCOMM) 21 August 2015, at and
  63. van Eijk, N. (2014). The Proof of the Pudding is in the Eating: Net Neutrality in Practice, the Dutch Example, August 2. Paper presented to the TPRC Conference 2014. Available at SSRN: or
  64. Wohlers, M., Giansante, M., Carlos, A., & Fodich, N. (2014). Shedding light on net neutrality: Towards possible solutions for the Brazilian case. Conference Paper presented to International Telecommunications Society 20th Conference, Rio, 1 December 2014, at
  65. Wray, R. (2009). Vodafone 360: mobile provider launches new applications service – The social network-based set of apps is designed to rival the iPhone and any handsets using Google’s Android software, The Observer, 20 September 2009, at
  66. Wu, T. (2007). Wireless Carterfone. International Journal of Communication, 1, 389, Columbia Public Law Research Paper No. 07-154. Available at SSRN:

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher T. Marsden
    • 1
  1. 1.University of SussexBrightonUK

Personalised recommendations