Sir Tim Berners-Lee slams companies trying to slow down the Internet

Sir Tim Berners-Lee has slammed Internet companies who propose so-called "Internet slow lanes" in order to extract more money from their customers. He made the remarks at IP EXPO Europe in London, during his keynote speech.

"There are times when ISPs might consider slowing down your packets because they wonder if you're making them enough money," Berners-Lee told the crowd. "But when that happens, usually the public comes down on them. Like in Holland, when Comcast tried to slow down Skype packets, and legislation came in to protect it."

He took the opportunity to champion the open values of the Internet that he said helped foster its beginnings.

"The reason I could take something called the World Wide Web and let it loose on an unsuspecting Internet was due to the fact that it was an open network," he said.

Berners-Lee also called for a better understanding of the concept of "open data".

"Some people think it's about MP's expenses and being publicly open - but it's more important than that. It's the economy of big data," he said.

"Don't give me a nice website with visualisations of your data. Give me the raw data, so I can merge it with what I want, so I can find out what that data looks like next to this data. That's open data!"

"Where places have an open data infrastructure, everything's easier," he added. "When companies own the data they hold, and others can't build apps on it that's bad."

IP EXPO Europe is ongoing, and you can follow our live coverage of the event here.