Day two of the CRTC network management hearing featured some great presentations from the Open Internet Coalition, Zip.ca, CISP, and two knowledgeable individuals – Jean-Francois Mezei and Jason Roks. The presenters had some strong words about the lack of Canadian competition for high-speed Internet service, the debatable claims about the impact of P2P on congestion, and the overstated advertising claims. Unfortunately, it would appear once again that the Commission has accepted the ISP claims regarding congestion and network costs, leaving the panelists with the challenge of overcoming those basic assumptions.
That said, the day featured some startling revelations including Zip.ca's Rob Hall stating that it is currently cheaper to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on postage to send DVDs via the mail, rather than distributing the same content electronically through the Internet given the bandwidth costs. Moreover, Jason Roks emphasized peering arrangements, where he stated that Bell is the only major Canadian ISP that refuses to peer with anyone else.
Potential solutions to come out of the day included:
1. Establishing a test for acceptable traffic management. The OIC three-part test focused on whether the traffic management furthers a pressing and substantial objective; is narrowly tailored to the objective; and is the least restrictive means of achieving the objective.
2. Truth in advertising. Emphasis on disclosure as well as possible limits on over-subscription.
3. Regulated peering to bring greater efficiences into the Canadian Internet.
4. Strong anti-competitive action to stop any attempts to leverage network management or pricing plans for unfair advantage.