Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

OpenMedia.ca: Global: Mother of dead student hounded for 3 years by Bell for $215

Stay classy, Big Telecom.

Article by Sean O’Shea for Global

Christine West of Lindsay, Ontario has grown frustrated with opening up the mailbox on her front porch.

She’s worried she’ll find another collection letter addressed to her middle daughter, Katie.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Measures to improve Canadians’ access to independent wireless services hailed as a positive step forward, although more will be needed to lower prices and boost choice

gatekeepers-share.png

Industry Minister James Moore has announced that vital digital assets will be set aside for affordable new entrants in upcoming auction of AWS-3 wireless spectrum. Canadians have been calling for this type of set-aside for years.

July 7, 2014 – Industry Minister James Moore has announced new measures aimed at improving wireless choice for Canadians. This morning’s announcement comes in response to a sustained years-long campaign led by OpenMedia.ca with the support of over 70,000 Canadians. The citizen-backed group is welcoming the news as a positive step forward for wireless choice, but says more action will be (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: TelClarity: The outrageous markup on wireless roaming costs.

CONFIRMED: Canadians are getting the shake down on wireless roaming rates, which average between a 50,000 – 200,000% markup. Think that’s ridiculous?

Article by Andrew Seipp for TelClarity

The wholesale cost of roaming is a closely guarded secret, but recent revelations by Wind have shed light on shockingly high margins.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Mobilesyrup: OpenMedia’s Access My Info tool requests the data your ISP has shared with the government

Are your Internet or cell phone services provided by the Big Three? Are you concerned about what private information they store about you? Then you should give our Access My Info tool a try at: https://OpenMedia.ca/MyInfo

Article by Daniel Barder for Mobilesyrup

It recently came to light that in 2011 alone, the Canadian government issued requests from various internet service providers for data on more than 785,000 citizens. Thanks to a Freedom of Information request, this data is legally obtainable for individuals, but the process has heretofore been onerous.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Wired: Researchers Find and Decode the Spy Tools Governments Use to Hijack Phones

Our friends at Citizen Lab have succeeded in reverse engineering spyware that is infecting people’s cellphones in democracies and dictatorships alike.

Article by Kim Zetter for Wired

Newly uncovered components of a digital surveillance tool used by more than 60 governments worldwide provide a rare glimpse at the extensive ways law enforcement and intelligence agencies use the tool to surreptitiously record and steal data from mobile phones.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Globe and Mail: Quebecor ‘ready, willing and able’ for wireless expansion: CEO

Greater wireless choice may be on the horizon if the government can get roaming rates under control. Would you switch providers if you had a different option?

Article by Christine Dobby for The Globe and Mail

Quebecor Inc. gave its strongest hint yet that it will expand its wireless business across Canada, but the company’s chief executive once again sent a pointed message to Ottawa on the urgency of creating “a level playing field.”

read more

OpenMedia.ca: New Access My Info tool empowers Canadians to learn what information their telecom collects about them, and shares with third parties, including government entities

share_pop_300_4.png

Tool built by privacy experts helps shed light on the data telecom companies collect and retain about Canadians

June 16, 2014 – Canadians have a new way to learn more about the information being collected about them by their telecom provider. A new online tool which is launching today simplifies the process of requesting information from telecom providers about the information they collect, and about their disclosure of personal information to third parties. The Access My Info tool creates a formal letter which, under Canadian privacy law, telecom companies are legally obliged to respond to within 30 days.

(Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Huffington Post: Canada’s Wireless Price Inequality Proves We Could Be Paying Way Less

Article by The Huffington Post Canada

Question: How much do you pay for 10 gigabytes of data and unlimited calling in Ontario?

Answer: Just about double what it costs in Manitoba.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: What do you think about Big Telecom blocking access to content and services in Canada?

For a long time now, Canadians have been getting the short end of the stick when it comes to accessing exciting, affordable, and innovative Internet and mobile phone services. Without rules that allow for truly open networks, Big Telecom giants have been able to dominate as the only game in town for most Canadians when it comes to the services that keep us connected online.

What we’re talking about here is Big Telecom blocking Canadians from innovative new services. We’re putting together a new campaign that focuses on how everyday Canadians are blocked by Big Telecom’s control of our (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: OpenMedia continues to fight against Big Telecom’s efforts to delay our hard-won consumer protection rules.

Just under a year ago, Big Telecom quietly put forward a motion in the Federal Court of Appeal to delay, in part, implementation of the CRTC’s new rule to protect cellphone users. A few months later, the Federal Court of Appeal officially announced they would hear the case.

At the heart of the appeal are the consumer protection rules – formally called the Wireless Code of Conduct – that we won together. This Code provides a comprehensive set of much-needed protections for customers of wireless services. To recap quickly, here are some of the benefits wireless customers get under the (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Financial Post: More choice could add $1 billion to Canada’s economy

Greater wireless choice could be a tremendous boon to Canada’s economy, according to reports. Tell Industry Minister James Moore that Canadians want much greater choice in their wireless market at

OpenMedia.ca: Prevented Telus/Mobilicity takeover is welcome news, but more govt action needed to level playing field and ensure wireless choice

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 12.05.42 PM.png

Affordable, independent providers are struggling because of years of a history of regulatory coddling of Big Telecom, says OpenMedia.ca

May 21, 2014 – The withdrawal of Telus’ bid to take over Mobilicity is welcome news for Canadian wireless users, but more government action needed to level the playing field for struggling independent providers. That’s according to OpenMedia.ca, which is running a sustained campaign for greater choice and lower prices in Canada’s wireless market. The group says every Canadian deserves affordable, independent options outside the Big Three for their wireless (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Words by Nowak: The reality of wireless bills in one simple chart

Actually, no, wireless bills are not going down. If you’re sick and tired of price-gouging, send James Moore a message at https://openmedia.ca/gatekeepers

Article by Peter Nowak

Further to my post yesterday about whether wireless bills have gone down… I got an email from Geoff White, counsel for the Public Interest Advocacy Centre, that hit the nail more closely on the head than the new report from J.D. Power has.

It’s true that subscribers are now getting more voice minutes, a faster network and a shorter amortization period on their subsidized phone (two years rather than three), but is (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Big Telecom’s price-gouging: uniting Canadians since 1880

With all that’s been happening around the secrecy of the TPP and the explosive situation in the U.S. around the looming Internet slow lane, your OpenMedia team thought it might be time to take a step back and give our community a quick update about the state of play in Canada’s dysfunctional wireless market.

So, what’s happening on the wireless front? Well, it looks like Big Telecom price-gouging appears to be one of Canada’s great uniters.

A little over a month ago, the government announced its support for a motion from the Official Opposition to study wireless price (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Guest Blog from Barry Shell – Is this the most ridiculous example of Big Telecom price-gouging yet?

Here’s a guest blog from OpenMedia friend and ally Barry Shell, highlighting how Big Telecom even charges Canadians who want to suspend their service while on holiday. Is this the most ridiculous example of Big Telecom price-gouging yet – or have you an even better example? Let us know in the comments!

Recently I decided to travel to Europe for just over a month. Before leaving Canada, I phoned Fido to suspend my cellphone service while we were out of the country. Just as I do with the newspaper delivery, I thought we could save a month’s charges.

Get this (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Guest blog by Canada’s mobile Internet hero Ben Klass: Don’t let Big Telecom turn your smartphone into a dumb TV

Chances are you have a love-hate relationship with your wireless provider: you love being able to use your smartphone wherever you go, but hate the high prices that Big Telecom charge for service.

If you’re like many Canadians, you use your smartphone or tablet to access the Internet. In fact, three out of four of us use the mobile Internet to stream video – but thanks to the wireless carriers’ expensive plans and low data caps, you probably think twice before catching up with the news on the way home from work or streaming Epic Meal Time with your friends, (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: ConCalls: Who Did The Domestic Calls? #RoboCon #elxnfraud

Some behind the scenes numbers about Elections Canada’s impotent investigation into illegal robocalls…

[note Prime Contact, which came up in the blogosphere earlier this week.]

81. At the national level, the Conservative Party, using data from its Constituent Information Management System (CIMS) database, called through two primary telemarketing companies: Responsive Marketing Group (RMG) for live calls, and RackNine for automated calls. Individual candidate campaigns used a variety of telemarketers. For its part, the Liberal Party used its Liberalist database and called electors through two telemarketing companies, Prime Contact and First Contact, while individual candidate campaigns used several telemarketers …

(Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: CBC: Cord-cutting continues as Canadians ditch TV & landlines

More and more Canadians are ditching Big Telecom’s price gouging on phone and TV services. What about you?

Article from The CBC

More Canadians are abandoning traditional telephones and TV services, reflecting a growing trend prompted by changing lifestyles, according to a new study.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Words by Nowak: Canadians deserve independent, world-class service at affordable rates

Compared to other industrialized countries, Canadian telecom giants reap far higher rewards while offering slow and expensive service. Last Friday’s Digital Canada 150 announcement by Industry Minister James Moore contained next to nothing to address that gap. Think Canadians deserve better? Demand choice in our wireless market at http://DemandChoice.ca

Article by Peter Nowak from Words by Nowak

With the imminent unveiling on Friday of Canada’s long-overdue digital strategy – titled Digital Canada 150 – it’s perhaps timely to take a look at how the federal government has fared in its most visible – and often volatile – technology-oriented policy: (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: April Fools Prank in Class

If you watch this, turn down the sound a bit, read the captions, and prepare to laugh loudly.

OpenMedia.ca: Province of Ontario: Ontario creates powerful protections for wireless consumers

It’s a win for Canadians and for our community! The Ontario government has enshrined consumer protections for wireless customers in law, introducing caps on contract cancellation fees and requiring Telecoms to advertise their prices more accurately. This significant decision was made possible by our monthly allies, who helped us work together to create a Cell Phone service roadmap directly cited by the government. To become a monthly Open Media ally, please go to https://openmedia.ca/allies.

Article from Ontario Ministry of Services

Ontario’s wireless and cell phone consumers will now get clear information and fewer surprises when they enter into cell (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Yahoo Finance: Canadian online video consumption, premium pricing on a collision course

Canadians want lower prices and more data from their wireless providers, but price-gouging Big Telecom giants have other ideas. Something’s got to give – speak out: http://DemandChoice.ca

Article by Carmi Levy for Yahoo Finance

Canadian wireless consumers could be headed toward a digital collision.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Globe and Mail: Telus’s decision to shut Public Mobile angers consumers

280,000 customers are being forced to pay a hefty fee to upgrade their phones following the Telus takeover of former indie provider Public Mobile.. Help us demand choice in our wireless market by going to http://DemandChoice.ca

Article by Rita Trichur and Steven Chase for The Globe and Mail

Telus Corp. is preparing to shut down Public Mobile’s wireless network, a move that forces the discount carrier’s roughly 280,000 customers to buy new cellphones in order to maintain service.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Top 5 things you need to know about the government’s long-awaited digital economy strategy

We were starting to worry this day would never come. But, lo and behold, here it is: the government has finally announced its long-awaited digital economy strategy, Digital Canada 150.

So, what’s the good news? While there are a few positive measures in the strategy, they amount to little more than a repackaging of previous government announcements and existing government programmes. In other words, the ‘good news’ is kind of ‘old news’. And the bad news? Well, the strategy will definitely leave Canadians in the slow lane, as the plan fails to tackle Canada’s national digital deficit and stark digital (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Government’s digital strategy leaves Canada stuck in the slow lane – fails to tackle stark digital divide and national digital deficit

OpenMedia_Sidebar_Image.png

Canadians deserve so much more than just warmed-up leftovers from previous government announcements: new strategy means Canada will likely fall even further behind its global counterparts on Internet affordability, access, and speed

April 4, 2014 – The government’s long-awaited new digital strategy announced this morning will disappoint Canadians who had been hoping for bold moves to tackle our national digital deficit and stark digital divide. That’s according to community-based OpenMedia.ca, which has spent years campaigning for all Canadians to have affordable, world class Internet access.

Many of the measures announced by Industry Minister James Moore today, while (Read more…)