The Broadcast and Telecommunications Legislative Review Panel released its much anticipated report yesterday with a vision of a highly regulated Internet in which an expanded CRTC (or a renamed Canadian Communications Commission) would aggressively assert its jurisdictional power over Internet sites and services worldwide with the power to levy massive penalties for failure to comply with its regulatory edicts. The recommendations should be rejected by Innovation, Science and Industry Minister Navdeep Bains and Canadian Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault as both unnecessary to support a thriving cultural sector and inconsistent with a government committed to innovation and freedom of expression.
Post Tagged with: "bains"
The CRTC Knows Best: Panel Report Recommends Costly Overhaul of Canadian Communications Law to Regulate Internet Sites and Services Worldwide
Canada has a well-earned reputation for some of the highest wireless prices in the world with numerous comparative studies finding that consumers pay relatively high prices for low amounts of data. There are obviously many factors behind pricing, but for many consumers the top line issue is how much does the wireless service cost and how much data do I get? Rewheel Research, a Finland based consultancy, has been at the forefront of pricing comparisons with extensive analysis of mobile data pricing in countries around the world. Its reports have often called out Canada, recently noting that prices are “a world apart” from more competitive markets. With Canadian telco giant Telus commissioning a study to challenge the Rewheel research, I’m joined this week on the Lawbytes podcast by Antonios Drossos, managing partner of the firm, who talked to me from Helsinki about their findings, what lies behind Canada’s wireless pricing, and the Telus-backed study.
What is the Point of the Broadcast and Telecom Legislative Review if the Government Has Already Decided What It Intends To Do?
The Broadcast and Telecommunications Legislative Review Panel released its interim report – What We Heard – yesterday alongside the long-overdue release of the written submissions to the panel. The report doesn’t contain any surprises given that the various positions on key telecom and broadcast issues are well known. While the panel is set to deliver its final report in January 2020, there is increasing reason to suspect that the government (if re-elected) has already decided what it wants to do.
No Longer a “Proposed” Telecom Policy Direction: Government Resets Canadian Telecom Policy With Emphasis on Broader Approach to Competition
Earlier this year, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains sent shockwaves through the Canadian telecom industry by unveiling a proposed new policy direction to the CRTC based on competition, affordability, consumer interests, and innovation (my original post on the proposed direction here, podcast with Teksavvy’s Andy-Kaplan Myrth here). The big three telecom providers unsurprisingly objected to the government’s shift away from facilities-based competition toward a broader approach that welcomed all forms of competition. That shift signalled support for entry of new competitors such as mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), a signal that the CRTC understood with its new-found support for them.
Process Failure: Why the Copyright Review Was Right To Ignore the Canadian Heritage Committee Study, Part One
The release of the much-anticipated copyright review report from the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology has sparked a range of reactions. From UNEQ’s “the committee despises creators” to Canadian Music Publishers Association’s “disappointing“, some groups would clearly prefer that the government pay attention to the one-sided Canadian Heritage study instead. In fact, the report makes it clear that the committee did not read the Heritage study, as the committee thanked its colleagues and noted that it “looks forward to consulting their report.”
That approach angered Heritage committee member Pierre Nantel, who moved a motion that the committee “express its dismay” that its report was ignored. At this stage, it does not appear that the committee will consider Nantel’s motion as no further meetings are planned before the House of Commons breaks for the summer and then dissolves with the fall election.