Ofcom reviews traffic controls used by broadband providers
The communications regulator has launched the publication in an effort to encourage debate on the topic, including how its own powers should be used to tackle the issue and what stance it should take on anti-competitive behaviour.
Broadband providers and operators use such controls to handle the flow of data on their networks to guarantee bandwidth and also prioritise traffic by type.
The issue is a major concern at present due to new European Union legislation which will come into UK law in 2011.
Ed Richards, chief executive of Ofcom, said people now depend on many web-based applications, so the way access is controlled by providers has become significant.
He added: "At the heart of this discussion is how to ensure that traffic management practices are transparent and how to ensure that traffic management is not used for anti-competitive discrimination."
Ofcom recently agreed a deal which will see major broadband providers including BT reduce the early termination charges on their home phone deals.