A lot of people in the world feel that the internet is an essential tool in life, just as important as electricity or water. These people want the internet to be reclassified as a utility to reflect this, and they have some support from the House of Lords.
The reason behind this is thanks to a report published by the Lords which found that the UK is falling behind other countries when it comes to universal internet access and access to high-speed connections. It believes that both factors will have a detrimental effect on the UK’s ability to compete in the ever-growing digital economy.
By reclassifying the internet as a public utility, it would mean that it’s something that will need to be made available for everyone to access and use. Unfortunately the Lords’ report didn’t go into any specifics on how that would work from a legal standpoint.
The report also mentions the fact that the UK is currently 26th on the list of average internet speed in 33 European capitals, and that there are still a number of internet deadspots in urban areas because ISPs felt it wasn’t economical to expand their services there. Neither of those things bode well for our country’s online infrastructure.
Whether this will actually mean a change in legislation isn’t clear right now, but it is good to know that the House of Lords does have our back when it comes to connecting to the internet.
Image: House of Lords Chamber by UK Parliament/Flickr