Archive for September, 2013

How the Government Can Put Digital Consumers First

Appeared in the Toronto Star on September 21, 2013 as How Ottawa Can Put Digital Consumers First Reports over the past week have indicated that the government plans to unveil a “consumer first” agenda for its upcoming Speech from the Throne. The speech, which will set out the federal legislative […]

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September 24, 2013 Comments are Disabled Columns Archive

Back to the Drawing Board: What Wireless Policies Might the Government Now “Aggressively Pursue”?

Industry Canada released the names of the bidders for its forthcoming spectrum auction yesterday with the disappointing news that no major new entrants will be using the auction to enter the Canadian market. That is rightly viewed as a big win for the incumbents, who should have little trouble acquiring the spectrum they want in the upcoming auction and will not face any new competition from deep-pocketed global wireless players. Instead, despite the persistent efforts of the federal government to convince new competitors to enter the market, the Big 3 will continue to dominate Canadian wireless services for the foreseeable future. With prices high by global standards and mobile broadband penetration lagging compared to other countries (an ITU study released over the weekend ranked Canada 32nd worldwide for mobile broadband penetration), consumers are the immediate and obvious loser for the moment.

Yet the incumbent victory did not come easily, coming at the cost of a scorched-earth public relations war with the federal government that the incumbents are already trying to downplay. However, having failed to address market concerns through new competitors, it may now fall to the government to shake things up through increased regulation. There are no shortage of options, with two big steps (the consumer wireless code that limits contract length and potential CRTC regulation of wireless roaming pricing) already underway. After yesterday’s release, Industry Minister Moore stated that “in addition to this auction, our Government will continue to aggressively pursue policies that ensure consumer interests are at the core of all Government decisions.”

What policies might Minister Moore have in mind?

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September 24, 2013 7 comments News

Rogers Tries to Distance Itself From Spectrum Battle But It Can’t Run From its Record

The Globe and Mail reports that Rogers Communications is trying to distance itself from this summer’s spectrum auction/Verizon battle. Edward Rogers apparently told an investor conference: “It’s been like watching a bit of a soap opera. Rogers has tried to be not as engaged in the dramatics of it and […]

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September 19, 2013 7 comments News

Interview Discussing Netflix’s Role in the Future of Broadcasting

I appeared on CKNW Newstalk 980 to discuss Netflix’s Role in the future of broadcasting. Listen to this podcast or download it here.

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September 19, 2013 Comments are Disabled Podcasts

The Issue with CSEC Handing over encryption codes to the NSA

I talked to Global News about the Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) handing over encryption codes to the NSA. Canada appears to have opened a backdoor for surveillance by the USA.

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September 17, 2013 Comments are Disabled News Interviews, Tv / Radio