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U.K. Government to Snub BBC, Google Over Web Access, FT Reports

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Nov. 17 (Bloomberg) -- U.K. Communications Minister Ed Vaizey will say today that Internet service providers should be free to favor traffic from one content provider over another, provided customers are informed, the Financial Times reported.

In a speech at a London telecommunications conference organized by the newspaper, the minister will say the market should decide the extent to which service providers can charge for preferential content delivery and slow down other traffic.

Vaizey’s refusal to support so-called “net neutrality” will disappoint companies such as the British Broadcasting Corp. and Google Inc., which argue that unimpeded Internet access furthers innovation; his policy promises new revenue streams for service providers such as BT Group Plc, TalkTalk Telecom Group Plc and Virgin Media Inc., by permitting them to charge media companies for faster access, the FT said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alan Purkiss in London on apurkiss@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for thi Colin Keatinge in London at ckeatinge@bloomberg.net.

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