We've all heard scary censorship stories, in which oppressive governments block access to information, and only allow residents of a nation to see, read, or watch what rulers permit. These stories usually start off slowly -- with justifiable censorship activities taking place for the supposed wellbeing of the nation--and escalate quickly. So why, then, are our governments talking about making censorship the default for the Internet in the U.K. and Canada?
Lindsey Pinto is the Communications Manager of OpenMedia.ca, a grassroots organization that safeguards the possibilities of the open and affordable Internet. She aspires to put Canada on the map as a leader in Internet freedom and accessibility, and the effective use of independent media for political communication. Her work centres on advancing informed and participatory digital policy.
Matt Buie, a financial planner and father living in Burnaby, B.C., was recently stunned by a $22,000 roaming charge on his cell phone account incurred by his 11-year-old while on vacation. After Buie spoke out in the media and talked to other cell phone users he quickly realized that he was not alone in feeling price-gouged, and is now taking action.
04/24/2013 12:44 EDT
While we still have a ways to go before the Internet service market offers Canadians the level of choice and affordability we deserve and what we need to at least become globally competitive, the coming together of the pro-Internet community to create real, tangible change is nothing to sneeze at.
04/18/2013 12:17 EDT
The Big Three cell phone providers now have even more room to raise prices and maintain disrespectful customer service, as the check on the market provided by new entrants diminishes. This is why Canadians pay some of the highest prices for mobile phone service in the industrialized world.
04/15/2013 05:42 EDT
A study released today by non-profit organization OpenMedia.ca shows a majority of Canadian respondents report being forced into accepting poor -- often disrespectful -- service. The group identifies the lack of choice in the cell phone market as the cause, pointing out that nearly 94 per cent of the market is controlled by three large players: Bell, Telus, and Rogers.
03/08/2013 06:06 EST
A CRTC hearing took place last week, where a draft code of conduct to protect cell phone users was broken down, debated, and negotiated. Up for discussion were contract length, automatic renewals, notifications of overages, caps on fees, device unlocking, and much much more. Now if you think a week of telecom hearings would be dull, you'd be dead wrong. There's a lot at stake as Canada falls behind the rest of the industrialized world in many things digital. After years of being lobbied by big telecom and all but shutting citizens out, policymakers are just starting to take note of the problems Canadians are facing.
02/22/2013 05:27 EST
The end of price-gouging, restrictive agreements, and disrespectful customer service will come only when all key decision makers -- not just the CRTC, but also Industry Canada, the Competition Bureau, and even MPs -- realize that Big Telecom's control over Canada's digital future has gone too far.
02/06/2013 05:23 EST
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