The EU passed the “Telecoms Reform Package” in May 2011. It limits Internet censorship and guarantees Internet Freedom and privacy. “Accordingly, these measures may only be taken with due respect for the principle of presumption of innocence and the right to privacy. A prior fair and impartial procedure shall be guaranteed, including the right to be heard of the person or persons concerned, subject to the need for appropriate conditions and procedural arrangements in duly substantiated cases of urgency in conformity with European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. The right to an effective and timely judicial review shall be guaranteed.”

“The conciliation process that led to the agreement was shepherded by the European Commission.” The Telecoms Reform Package as a whole has for objective to “substantially enhance consumer rights and consumer choice in Europe’s telecoms markets, and add new guarantees to ensure the openness and neutrality of the internet”.

In the article, member states take any measures to limit internet access or use must “respect the fundamental rights and freedoms of natural persons, as guaranteed by the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and general principles of Community law”.

It also says any access or use limitations must be “appropriate, proportionate and necessary within a democratic society”, and their implementation must include “effective judicial review and due process”.

“Accordingly, these measures may only be taken with due respect for the principle of presumption of innocence and the right to privacy,” the text adds. “A prior fair and impartial procedure shall be guaranteed, including the right to be heard of the person or persons concerned… The right to an effective and timely judicial review shall be guaranteed.”

Sources:

http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/policy/ecomm/tomorrow/index_en.htm

http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=MEMO/09/491

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