Archive for October 15th, 2010

Federal Court Open Door to Business Method Patents

The Federal Court of Canada has overruled the Patent Appeal Board in concluding that business method patents can be approved in appropriate circumstances.  Coverage from the Globe and QMI.  I wrote about the issue last year.

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October 15, 2010 5 comments Must Reads

Court Rules University Sanctions Over Facebook Comments Violate Charter of Rights

An Alberta court has ruled that University of Calgary sanctions against two students who posted negative comments about a professor on Facebook violate the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

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October 15, 2010 Comments are Disabled Must Reads

Study Finds Canada Ranks As Most Expensive for Cellphone Plans

The New America Foundation has released a new study comparing cell phone rates in 11 countries. It finds that Canada ranks as the most expensive for packages that include voices, text, and data.

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October 15, 2010 5 comments Must Reads

Telus Seeks “Switzerland” Approach to Content

Telus CEO Darren Entwistle says that the company believes that the CRTC rules governing fair access to traditional broadcasting “are not limited to linear TV, they extend into broadband and wireless.”

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October 15, 2010 1 comment Must Reads

Why are U.S. Net Services Slow to Migrate North?

Netflix, the popular online movie rental service, launched in Canada last month, providing consumers with the option to download an unlimited number of movies and television shows for a flat monthly fee.  While the Netflix debut was marred by an ill-advised public relations stunt that involved actors masquerading as excited consumers, my weekly technology law column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) notes that the long delays in migrating the service north once again raised questions over why popular online services rarely view Canada as a priority destination.

Canada’s legal framework makes for a convenient explanation, but the reality is that subtle legal differences are rarely the primary rationale for business and marketing decisions.  Moreover, Canadian privacy, e-commerce, and intellectual property laws are compliant with international standards and recent surveys have found that business executives view Canadian protections as better than those in the United States. As the Canadian government readies its national digital economy strategy, identifying the real reasons behind delayed entry into the Canadian market is a crucial piece of the puzzle.  

At least three explanations come to mind.

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October 15, 2010 36 comments Columns