The vote will lead to a less competitive Internet as broadband providers seek to create paid "fast lanes," opponents of the bill warned. Internet providers argued that it was in the "main interest of European consumers" to be able to choose among providers based on quality of service and support for various features such as connected cars or telemedicine. Stronger rules might restrict their ability to differentiate themselves and try different business models, they had previously argued.
Some members of the European Parliament took to Twitter immediately after the vote to express their frustration with the outcome, while other officials hailed a landmark decision on roaming that was included in the bill.
The roaming provisions of the legislation ensure that users of a communications service traveling to another EU member state will no longer be slapped with high fees for going abroad. The measure pushes Europe toward greater integration, at least as far as mobile services.
But many net neutrality advocates are portraying the bill's passage as a defeat for the policy.