Netflix appeals Seoul network fee ruling

SEOUL, July 19 (UPI) – Streaming giant Netflix has said it has appealed a recent court ruling requiring it to pay network usage fees to a South Korean telecommunications company.

The Seoul Central District Court ruled against Netflix Korea last month in its long battle with SK Broadband, an internet service provider and subsidiary of the country’s leading mobile operator SK Telecom.

The court declined to accept Netflix’s demands to confirm that the over-the-top platform does not have to pay network usage fees to SK Broadband.

“The June 25 verdict negates the roles that each have a content provider and an Internet service provider,” Netflix said in a statement. “This shifts the responsibility of the latter onto the former.

“There are fears that this decision will destroy the Internet ecosystem. There have been no cases where a government or a court has charged content providers for the use of a network,” he said. he declares.

Since the legal battle began in April 2020, Netflix has argued, under the principle of net neutrality, that Internet service providers should provide access to all sites and content at the same speed, at no cost.

SK Broadband countered that anyone who uses their network should pay for the services.

“If Netflix rejects the court ruling, which recognizes the responsibility to compensate for network usage, it means the company is denying our basic business model,” an SK Broadband official told UPI News Korea.

“Netflix is ​​also misleading people as if all global content providers have to pay network usage fees to SK Broadband,” he said. “The verdict says those who use dedicated lines like Netflix should pay a fee.”

SK Broadband said that South Korea’s major internet portals, such as Naver and Kakao, pay network usage fees.

Netflix claimed 4.8% of the country’s total network traffic in the last quarter of 2020, after Google with 25.9%, according to the Korean government. Naver and Kakao followed them with 1.8% and 1.4%, respectively.

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