CNOC on the CRTC UBB Review: It’s Re-Arranging Deck Chairs on the Titanic

The Canadian Network Operators Consortium, which represents two dozen independent ISPs, has asked the CRTC to expand the scope of its usage based billing consultation.  Rather than limit the review primarily to UBB, CNOC says the review should:

include a comprehensive review of the regulatory framework applicable to all wholesale high-speed access services (“WHSAS”) provided by incumbent local exchange carriers and cable carriers (collectively “incumbents”) to their competitors and to include from the outset, in the expanded proceeding, an online consultation and a public hearing, and certain additional procedural steps.

The letter makes it clear that CNOC is seeking nothing less than a complete overhaul of the regulatory framework for broadband competition in Canada.  The organization argues that “incumbent wholesale high-speed services, including the last-mile access, constitute the broadband platform that competitors need to offer almost all telecommunications and broadcasting services to consumers.”  It adds: If the Commission does not ask the right questions, it cannot possibly hope to get the right answers. If it limits this proceeding to a review of billing practices for WHSAS employed in the provision of residential services by competitors, the situation will be analogous to a rearrangement of deck chairs on the Titanic before it sank. In the absence of a proper regulatory framework, any solution to the issues raised in the current proceeding will only delay the inevitable sinking of the competitive ship.

CNOC proposes several broad questions including the prospect of revisiting the ADSL-CO service.  Moreover, CNOC asks the CRTC to move quickly to include an online consultation and oral public hearing, with the goal of reaching its determination by the end of the year.


  1. Hart
    I already pay my ISP (Shaw) $50 per month for internet access. They give me a 100GB cap that costs Shaw $1 to $2 to supply. They have a $48-$49 profit they can use as they see fit.

    Now, they want me to pay a SECOND TIME, in the form of UBB, at a 2000% markup, for something I’ve already paid for.

    Bell/Shaw want us to believe we have to pay for our usage separately, in addition to paying our huge flat monthly rate, that btw, is being raised by $2 again in April!

    UBB has nothing to do with “network congestion” UBB is about “Netflix Prevention”. It’s a despicable, unnecessary business practice, and all the lies and rhetoric surrounding “heavy users” vs “light users” is just a ploy to get people to sympathize with the ISPs, and pit us against one-another.

    Heavy users, and light users, the same, all pay for their data usage with their flat monthly rate. The ISPs are just being greedy, and want to prevent us from using their web-based, and FAR superior competitors, such as Netflix, and web-TV.

    Shaw even (quietly) lowered our caps by 30% just as they implemented UBB. That goes to show you just how greedy our ISPs have become, with the total lack of competition.

    I have only one choice for an ISP where I live: $haw High Greed Internet. That’s my only choice, Konrad, no matter how many times you repeat that we all have plenty of choices; it doesn’t make it magically come true.

    Our government needs to read Mr. Geist’s articles more throughly, and stop believing Shaw/Bells’ nonsense about network congestion. That’s not the REAL reason for UBB. It’s clearly an anti-competitive approach to destroying their web-based competition.

  2. CRTC UBB – Internet Greed
    The CDN Internet Fights Back (HUZZAH!)

    It’s like the 300 in the movie 300.
    Or even better like in Robin Hood – “When Sheeple Become Lions!”



  3. Credit where credit is due..
    Shaw leads the pack on waiting to hear from the public before making any final decisions. They have had caps in place for a long time but only went to the trouble of contacting customers if you were WAY over for a couple months straight.
    I for One am getting an invite to my local Shaw UBB consultation!

    Thanks for being on top of this MG!

  4. The CNOC is right on the money
    The CNOC is asking for nothing more than what developed countries in Europe and Asia already have, which is “open access” broadband regulations. The reason North Americans are getting gouged is because of our “inter modal” system where the only competition is between territorial duopolies. The open-access system regulates basic network infrastructure so many companies can offer internet, HDTV and other services. That’s why they pay less than half of what we pay in North America.

    We need a government willing to take action. The internet is the backbone of a 21st-century, innovation-based economy. We can’t allow big media monopolies to continue to milk us for all they can get. We are falling behind other developed countries and currently have the worst broadband thanks to the CRTC.

    We need to break up the CRTC and replace it with a ministry of broadband. That way the government has to answer directly to the people on the state of our wired and mobile internet. The CRTC is a Soviet-style bureaucracy of “experts” who are ignorant of what is going on in the rest of the world. Instead of adapting to a constantly changing internet, they are telling Canadians how the internet is supposed to work. They have the audacity to punish Canadians for buying services people in other countries have no problems with. They are dragging us down. Time to put a stop to it.

  5. @Ron:

    We used to have a Ministry of Communications until 1996, when we decided that “the industry” would work better when self-regulated (via CRTC).

    Pretty much like our southern neighbors that decided at about the same time that Wall Street would work better when self-regulated.

    How that unfolded we know.


  6. @Napalm

    Thats free market except people forget that in a free market those who get the biggest then get to decided the market and are free to manipulate it with bribing/lobbying those that run the country.

  7. SHAW
    Hmmm…I am with Shaw and use them for all three services. They have NOT notified me, either by E-Mail or snailmail of cap reductions and overage uses. Nice hah?

  8. @end user:

    Exactly. We’ve been brainwashed to automatically decide that “free market = good thing” and “controlled market = bad thing”.

    If you look carefully in the definition of it you notice that “free” is about the state enforcing, at the taxpayer’s expense, the contracts and the ownership of property of the corporations….. so yes it’s “free” but only for the corporate world… and the consumer pays for all of it.


  9. Sticky Green says:

    If abusers have to pay more……
    If “Abusers” have to pay more because they use more, then why can’t it go the other way? That dickhead Bibic keep piping “use what you pay for”. Where’s Bell’s 10GB package for $8 for grandma to email her grandkids? He said himself that 80% of Bell users only use 20% of their bandwidth, which leaves 80% bandwidth PAID FOR and UNUSED. Bravo Bell. So, If Bell charges $4 extra for “bandwidth abuse” — how much of that goes to Studios and record labels if you’re streaming Netflix and using Itunes?

  10. ,,,
    @Sticky: “He said himself that 80% of Bell users only use 20% of their bandwidth, which leaves 80% bandwidth PAID FOR and UNUSED.”

    Mirko, let’s see a 80% refund for all these years.


  11. Strangely – why wouldn’t Bell *prefer* CNOC’s world?
    Bell should wake up and consider what the world could be like.

    If “the last mile” was split off from Bell, and separately owned and managed along with competitive CO access, the rest of Bell could move to escape all the special regulatory conditions they currently operate under.

    Bell needs to realize that owning the last mile itself is becoming an albatross. Bell’s shareholders would likely be better served to have that portion of the network publicly or in-trust owned and managed.

  12. @Chris S, online offerings for telecommunications and content services are far, far cheaper than Bell would ever be willing to offer. Bell would have to drastically reduce prices if they lost control of infrastructure. UBB was an effort to bring costs of online services within the same range as their traditional services. Losing control would be the *worst* decision for them, since it would foster significantly more competition.

  13. Canadian Consumer says:

    Competition? You mean one of the biggest players in the internet market in North America would have to compete fairly?

    But, but, but… isn’t business in Canada all about cronyism? Isn’t the Canadian telecommunications industry the most bribed, regulated and stacked against the consumers in the whole world?

    Compete? Are kidding, Bell is competing by bribing the CRTC and giving money to politicians to look the other way. Business for Telco’s the Canadian way. THIS IS WAKE UP TIME only because their greed made them trip over the alarm bells. I really think the CRTC should be disband for this. It does not get any more out of touch then this. You can’t make up in your face corruption like was displayed by the UBB. Time to wake up Canada.

  14. Request federal government to dissolve the CRTC
    Please add your name to the list requesting the federal government to dissolve the CRTC at:

  15. Ramblin' Rose says:

    Intercourse in Smoke Free Rooms…Nonsense
    It’s time to talk relatively simple English. (Maybe strike the relatively)?

    Michael…how about a short paragraph or two that explains to the Politicians and the CRTC, that Bell and friends have never approached any of them for anything that was good for consumers or their pocket books.

    Traffic shaping and usage-based billing aren’t about saving the Internet for everyone, rather keeping Bell the Bandwidth Boss Hogg of soon to be backwater Canada County.

    Two days ago I signed up for the Netflix Free Month. Last night on two separate occasions (after 4:00 pm)at the beginning of an older TV feed and again later for an HD movie there was a pause…”your internet connection has slowed, netflix is making adjustments…

    I am neither a geek nor a lawyer but is my experience last night another example of whether through Usage-Based Billing, Traffic Shaping or their 50 year affair with the CRTC that Bell are operating behind a smoke screen after intercourse with everyone who is supposed to be looking after our interests?

    تبليغات هداياي تبليغاتي طراحي و چاپ
    تبليغات هداياي تبليغاتي طراحي و چاپ نیک گرافیک

  17. Phil Michael says:

    UBB impact
    The UBB proposed by BELL/Telus will impact many other services that more and more Canadians are subscribing to. My kids are in college and they quite frequently have home assignments that need access to the internet. I have taken online courses through some local universities and I could easily exceed the set limits. My usage and that of other does not and will not cause network congestion. CRTC need to be educated on this. Network congestion can happen at any time for various reasons. Just recall last year when an earthquake hit the Ottawa area; most of us had difficulty using our cell phones. The purpose of UBB is primarily to geared to bring in more $$s for the already greedy large ISPs. The problem starts with the people who are running these large incumbent ISPs. They lack the vision to build a superior infrastructure and offer better products that will be accessible to every single person in Canada. As far as CRTC goes I think it has become irrelevant.

  18. Beware
    Do not trust any of the large cable, satellite and phone companies. For years I was served with lower grade of internet service by Rogers and I was only successful to convince them after repeated attempts. I have since canceled all subscription to Rogers. Last week BELL announced that it was pulling off its faulty internet usage tracker. I wonder how long this has gone undetected. My advice is for all of you to test your internet regularly. Do not just the tool provided by an ISP. There are many tools on the internet that will verify the speeds you are getting. Here are some links:

  19. Here is a definition of bandwith:
    a data transmission rate; the maximum amount of information (bits/second) that can be transmitted along a channel

    So what does this have to do with how much I download? If I download 25gig or 2500 gigs I still only use x-amount of bandwidth given how fast my ISP is.

    If there are 2 users on a network, and they both have 10mps then they still only use 10mps of the bandwidth. Congest starts when more and more users get on the network.

    So this 25 gig limit has nothing to do with bandwidth and with Bell trying control the network which they didn’t pay for.

  20. Now we’re talking!
    Hopefully the UBB fiasco was the last straw that opens up the Last Mile to access by competitors. Only then will we see real innovation.

  21. عکاسی صنعتی تکبرگ says:

    کانون تبلیغاتی تکبرگ

    عکاسی صنعتی
    عکاسی تبلیغاتی
    آتلیه عکاسی
    چاپ و بسته بندی
    هدایای تبلیغاتی
    طراحی گرافیکی
    لیوان کاغذی
    طراحی کاتالوگ

  22. عکاسی صنعتی تکبرگ says:

    عکاسی صنعتی تکبرگ
    عکاسی صنعتی
    عکاسی تبلیغاتی
    آتلیه عکاسی
    چاپ و بسته بندی
    هدایای تبلیغاتی
    طراحی گرافیکی
    لیوان کاغذی
    طراحی کاتالوگ

  23. طراحی سایت

  24. طراحی سایت