Public service or universal service?


Telecommunications Policy

1996, vol. 20, n°6, pp.391-397

Departments: Tax & Law

The right of access of users to the service(s), the equality of their treatment, which is synonymous with the refusal of all discrimination, and the continuity of service in time and space are virtues that we feel the need to rehabilitate. These virtues are consubstantial with the traditional definition of the French concept of 'public service'.Because this concept is suspect, the European Union adopted a new one, of Anglo Saxon origin, that of 'universal service'. Universal service, in Europe as in the US, has no precise meaning. The present article proposes to discuss the concept of universal service and to thus reflect on the meaning of the policy of liberalization of services, in Europe and in the US