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European Parliament votes in favor of net neutrality

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The European Parliament approved a measure that could pave the way for net neutrality for the 28 countries in the European Union. Though legislators voted in approval of the rules, which would force all Internet service providers to treat all traffic the same, the bill won't become law until several potential obstacles are overcome, according to The New York Times. First, the rules would need to be approved by the new European Parliament next month after May elections and each countries would need to meet and agree on the rules with both parliament and the European Commission. Still, it's a move in the right direction, according to consumer groups and legislators who backed the new rules, reports The Associated Press. EC Vice President Neelie Kroes called the vote "historic." Kroes was the leading force behind the legislation. ISPs, on the other hand, aren't happy with the 534-25 vote, because they feel they are the ones primarily footing the cost for bandwidth and other disadvantages, compared to U.S. telecommunication companies and threatened it could lead to less jobs and investments. "Europe's telecoms operators are facing decreasing revenues compared with operators in the U.S. and Asia." Though there will still be plenty of debate as the bill continues to move forward, Luis Morago, of the activist group Avaaz, backed the move. "Now the pressure turns to European leaders to listen to the people - not Vodafone, Orange, Deutsche Telekom and Telefonica."