NDP MP Charlie Angus introduced his private member's net neutrality bill in the House of Commons this afternoon. The short bill seeks to add transparency, neutral network management, and open devices to the Canadian telecom law framework:
Network operators shall not engage in network management practices that favour, degrade or prioritize any content, application or service transmitted over a broadband network based on their source, ownership or destination.
The bill includes several notable exceptions to this general principle, including action to provide computer security, prioritize emergency communications, offer differentiated pricing or bit caps, anti-spam filters, handle breaches in terms of service, and to prevent violation of the law.
The bill also focuses on open devices and greater transparency. It provides that "network operators shall not prevent or obstruct a user from attaching any device to their network, provided the device does not physically damage the network or unreasonably degrade the use of the network by other subscribers." Further, it requires that "network operators shall provide and make available to each user information about the user’s access to the Internet, including the speed, nature, and limitations of the user's broadband service at any given time." The bill is hardly the "regulate the Internet" approach anti-net neutrality advocates would suggest, but rather is a measured response that deserves broad support.