Archive for March, 2012

CRTC To Consult On Expanding Public Access To Corporate Data

The CRTC has announced plans to hold a consultation on whether information provided by incumbent companies on wholesale Internet access should be made publicly available. The CRTC has faced criticism for keeping much of the submitted information confidential rendering it difficult to fully assess the validity of cost claims.

Read more ›

March 26, 2012 1 comment Must Reads

Ottawa Foregoes Bold Vision on Telecom

After months of delay, Industry Minister Christian Paradis unveiled the government’s telecom strategy last week, setting out the details of the forthcoming spectrum auction and tinkering with longstanding foreign ownership restrictions. Spectrum allocation and auctions, which focus on the availability of frequencies used to provide wireless services, involves fairly technical questions that few outside the industry follow closely. Yet the impact of spectrum policy has far reaching effects on consumers, since the right policies can foster greater competition, better services, and lower prices.

While the headlines have focused on changes to the foreign ownership rules, my weekly technology law column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) echoes my initial post on the decision by arguing the government’s policy choices are rather timid.

Read more ›

March 22, 2012 7 comments Columns

Ottawa Picks Bland Over Bold on Telecom Policy

Appeared in the Toronto Star on March 18, 2012 as Ottawa Foregoes Bold Vision for Telecom After months of delay, Industry Minister Christian Paradis unveiled the government’s telecom strategy last week, setting out the details of the forthcoming spectrum auction and tinkering with longstanding foreign ownership restrictions. Spectrum allocation and […]

Read more ›

March 22, 2012 Comments are Disabled Columns Archive

Does Bill C-11 Create Barriers to Network PVRs and Cloud Services in Canada?

Bill C-11 has passed the committee stage last week and now seems slated to become law before the summer. The Bill C-11 legislative committee recently posted the remaining committee submissions (C-32 submissions here, C-11 here), which confirm that the government rejected the intense efforts of some groups to undo many of the user-oriented provisions. Some of the demands included:

  • remove the user generated content provision
  • create a new fair dealing test
  • remove new statutory damages limits for non-commercial infringement
  • remove a new exception for educational use of publicly available materials on the Internet
  • add an iPod tax
  • add statutory damages to circumvention of digital locks
  • force ISPs to keep subscriber data for 3 years after an alleged infringement

While the extreme demands were rejected, the government also decided against proposed amendments from many groups such as those representing the visually impaired, documentary film makers, and librarians. One of the more notable decisions was to leave untouched a provision that could create some legal risks for cloud computing based services such as network-based PVRs. Both Rogers and Shaw raised concerns with the approach in Bill C-11, yet the government did not amend the provision in question despite a proposal on point from the Liberals.

Read more ›

March 21, 2012 18 comments News

The Math Behind Copyright Math

Rob Reid has posted further details on the numbers behind his $8 Billion iPod TED Talk.

Read more ›

March 21, 2012 6 comments Must Reads