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OpenMedia.ca: OpenMedia welcomes new CRTC Internet speed measurement program as a win for Canadians and an important step to protect net neutrality

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OpenMedia welcomes new CRTC Internet speed measurement program as a win for Canadians and an important step to protect net neutrality

May 21, 2015 – This morning the CRTC announced a new Internet speed measurement program designed to “measure the performance of their home broadband Internet services,” and is inviting everyday Canadians to participate. Community-backed OpenMedia, which called for proactive audits of Internet performance in its crowdsourced Casting an Open Net report, hails the decision as a win for Canadians, and a key step toward protecting Net Neutrality.

Responding to the news, OpenMedia Campaigns Manager Josh Tabish had (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Federal Court of Appeal rejects Big Telecom’s efforts to delay implementation of wireless customer protection rules

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Federal Court of Appeal rejects Big Telecom’s efforts to delay implementation of wireless customer protection rules

May 19, 2015 – The Federal Court of Appeal today has rejected Big Telecom’s efforts to delay the implementation of the Wireless Code of Conduct, stating that the CRTC “…has the right to make the Wireless Code applicable to contracts concluded before the Code came into effect.” The code contains significant customer protections for mobile phone and Internet users, including an end to 3-year contracts, and caps on roaming charges for data.

Community-backed OpenMedia, which represented Canadians throughout the court (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: In a win for Canadians, CRTC promises fair rules to promote greater choice and affordability in our mobile phone market

New rules from regulator ensures Canadians will have choices outside the Big Three leading to lower phone bills and more flexible offerings in the not-too-distant future.

May 5, 2015 – A major ruling from the CRTC today signals a significant step toward providing Canadians with greater choice and affordability in our mobile phone and Internet market. Community-based group OpenMedia, which intervened in the hearing, is hailing the decision as a win for people across the country, who have been paying some of the highest prices in the industrialized world. However the CRTC could have gone further by facilitating innovation through (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: CBC: Did you know about cost-effective, mobile phone service Google Fi Wireless? Well, it won’t come to Canada anytime soon

The new phone service is a cost-effective alternative , though only available to Americans for now. 

Article by Dianne Buckner for CBC News

Google is about to launch a new cost-effective mobile phone service for Americans only. And as the news spreads, it may trigger a new round of grumbling in Canada over the state of this country’s telecom industry.  

Google Fi will cost a mere $20 a month for talk, text, Wi-Fi tethering, and international coverage in more than 120 countries. And here’s a flashy selling point: customers will pay only for the data they use, and (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Federal Court of Appeal allows Bell Mobility to challenge university student, single mother, seniors’ organization and others in court over recent CRTC ruling on Mobile TV

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April 2, 2015 – Today’s the Federal Court of Appeal announced that Bell Mobility will be allowed to challenge a recent CRTC decision prohibiting the telecom giant from making competing apps and services more expensive. The decision means that Bell could potentially seek legal costs from university student Ben Klass, a single mother, and a senior citizens’ organization, amongst other respondents, if they have their say in court.

Responding to the news, OpenMedia Campaigns Manager Josh Tabish had this to say:

“After over a year of unpaid hard work from citizens to convince policy-makers that Bell should (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: AlphaBeatic: A wolf in Fido’s clothing

Last week we wrote about new plans from Rogers-owned Fido to make competing apps and services more expensive (details here: http://bit.ly/1DgdmP7). Today, it looks like they are continuing on this path to violate #NetNeutrality, announcing a new deal that will make certain music streaming services more expensive on their networks. Once again, telecom giants are trying to make the Internet more like cable TV by controlling what we see and hear online. Do you think they should have this power? Or should they have to treat all services equally?

Article by Peter Nowak for AlphaBeatic

When is something (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: CBC: You won’t believe why Bell blacklisted this teenager’s phone

Well folks, it looks like Bell is at it again – and they’re taking price-gouging to new lows. They’re abusing their power to push Canadians into buying new phones instead of used ones – and are going as far as unfairly disabling phones.

Article by Kathy Tomlinson

A Montreal father is taking on Canada’s largest telecom, after Bell blacklisted his teenager’s phone — not because it was reported stolen, but because the original buyer didn’t pay Bell for the device under contract.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Are Rogers and Fido planning to make competing mobile services more expensive for Canadians?

Your OpenMedia team recently got wind of new plans afoot by Rogers’ subsidiary Fido to make competing apps and services more expensive over their mobile networks, and it’s certainly cause for concern.

Based on a recent article from Mobile Syrup, it appears that the carrier intends to create unfair incentives for customers that privilege certain services–their own–over others, violating the principle of net neutrality. Mobile Syrup reports:

New customers will be shifting towards a loyalty-based membership program focused on rewards like credit towards streaming music and a certain allotment of video streaming (with a heavy emphasis on Rogers’ (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Expert Report reveals which telecom companies have your back when it comes to being transparent about protecting privacy

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Report provides Canadians with an at-a-glance tool to rate their Internet provider’s transparency around privacy safeguards. Indie ISP Teksavvy “stands out” as the best of the 10 major retailers measured.

March 12, 2015 – A report published this morning has revealed that Canadian Internet providers are still falling short when it comes to being transparent about how they protect their customers’ privacy. The report found that all telecom companies need to do more to keep customers informed about how they safeguard privacy. Independent ISP Teksavvy performed best of the 10 major retailers, with telecom giant Shaw and Quebec-based (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: CBC: There’s never been a better time to improve scrutiny of our spy agencies

Edward Snowden reveals just how weak Canada’s spying oversight framework is.

Article by CBC News

U.S. National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden says Canada has one of the “weakest oversight” frameworks for intelligence gathering in the Western world.

read more

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Hilldog16 on SnapChat?

I have a Snapchat account. I’ve not used it in years because it was making my cell phone too full. Imagine if Hillary Clinton had a Snapchat account too, for government business? Her’s would be used for an illegal purpose, like her personal email was. You may recall Sarah Palin got into trouble (without apparent consequence) for this sort of thing too.

“Just message me on SnapChat, I’m hilldog16” – http://t.co/SiSKK4WvOu

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) March 3, 2015

Hillary Clinton exclusively used private email while secretary of state http://t.co/TMMZ2fpqIk pic.twitter.com/Mb3os4dB1b

— Cory Doctorow (@doctorow) March 3, 2015

OpenMedia.ca: AlphaBeatic: The making of an Internet activist

Thanks to community member Ben Klass, the CRTC ruled that Canadian wireless companies can’t slow down competing services in favour of their own – a huge step towards securing mobile net neutrality in this country. Check out this great Q and A about what keeps Ben fighting for the open Internet.

Article by Peter Nowak for AlphaBeatic

Canadian regulators took a big step toward supporting net neutrality on Thursday with a ruling that bans wireless carriers from favouring their own content over others.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: The Globe: Spectrum auction may bring some surprises

Could we finally see more choice in Canada’s wireless market this year?

Article by Christine Dobby for the Globe and Mail

Mobilicity says it has not yet secured the financial backing it needs to take part in an upcoming auction of wireless airwaves.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: CBC: Cancel your TV, Internet, and phone whenever you want

Goodbye, 30-day cancellation notices! Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

Article by the CBC

Canadians no longer have to give a 30-day notice to cancel or change their television, internet or landline telephone service, the CRTC says.

In a release, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission said it is “prohibiting television service providers from requiring that Canadians give 30 days’ notice prior to cancelling these services.”

read more

OpenMedia.ca: iPhone in Canada: Bell loses huge class action suit

There’s no end of good news lately when it comes to Big Telecom getting smacked down.

Article by Nick Salerni for iPhone in Canada

Bell Mobility has lost a class-action lawsuit appeal that found the Canadian carrier liable to thousands of subscribers in Canada’s three northern territories over fees for non-existent 911 services.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: James Moore spectrum announcement hailed as a positive step forward to enable greater wireless choice and lower prices

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In response to outcry for Canadians, Industry Canada has taken steps to ensure Canadians have greater access to affordable, independent wireless providers

December 18, 2014 – Industry Minister James Moore has announced new measures aimed at improving wireless service for Canadians. OpenMedia welcomes the announcement, which will reserve a larger section of valuable wireless spectrum for new, independent, affordable providers than ever before. The changes aim to increase the amount of spectrum available to  independent providers from around 15% currently to nearly 25% by May 2015.

The decision comes in response to OpenMedia’s crowdsourced set of recommendations ( (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: I’m Boring, Ignore Me: Supreme Court Ruins Privacy

I think people who say they are too ordinary, law abiding, and boring for police to violate them, are more wishing that were true than stating a fact.

Will the police keep the phone as it keeps generating evidence? For how long? Can you refuse to provide your password or will the police IT department bypass it?

In Gary Shteyngart’s 2010 novelSuper Sad True Love Story of a terrible future, everyone walks around with an “apparati,” a data-collection rating device on their chest. It’s like wearing an open cellphone. This court ruling takes us one step closer to this.

And (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Toronto Star Editorial: The Supreme Court got it wrong

Cell phone searches are deeply invasive and represent a huge violation of Canadians’ privacy, according to the Toronto Star. What do you think?

Article from The Toronto Star

When Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government killed the long-form census, it insisted that Canadians needed to be shielded from “coercive and intrusive” assaults on their privacy.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: OpenMedia takes detailed input from 30,000 Canadians to crucial CRTC hearing that will decide future of Internet access in Canada

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Canadians are urging the CRTC to ensure access to affordable, independent Internet providers

December 1, 2014 – Canadians are sending a clear message to decision-makers at the CRTC today: protect our right to affordable, independent, high-speed Internet. That message is being delivered by community-based OpenMedia.ca, who will be making a presentation to the CRTC’s Review of Wholesale Services hearing in Gatineau between 12 noon and 3pm ET today. OpenMedia’s presentation will reflect input crowdsourced from over 30,000 Canadians.

The crucial CRTC hearing will determine whether Canadians will have independent access to fibre Internet. At the moment large (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: CBC: Bell’s app ratings are too good to be true

Bell’s been caught red-handed trying to boost their ratings in the Apple app store by having senior managers write up fake reviews. Now they might get booted from the app store. Womp womp.

Article by Sophia Harris for the CBC

As soon as Bell Canada launched a new version of a phone app last week, the response online was electric; it quickly garnered glowing, five-star reviews on Apple’s iTunes App Store.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: Could Bell get kicked out of Apple’s AppStore for breaking the rules and rigging the rankings?

If you’re an enormous telecom conglomerate, and you release a new app to unfavourable ratings, what do you do?

You could invest some of your vast resources into listening to customers and making the app better — or you could get your senior managers to leave fake reviews to mislead customers and fluff up your ratings instead.

In the case of Bell Canada, the answer was clear.

Thanks to awesome detective work by UnMarketing’s Scott Stratten, we know that senior Bell executives deliberately left fake reviews for its MyBell Mobile app in clear contravention of the AppStore’s rules.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: The Star: Canadians are tired of the same-old-same-old in wireless providers

Why choice will improve Canada’s wireless market.

Article by Michael Geist for the Star

Last year’s explosive battle over the potential entry of wireless giant Verizon into the Canadian market may be a distant memory, but the debate over the state of wireless competition remains very much alive. Industry Minister James Moore has pointed to a modest decline in consumer pricing and complaints as evidence that government policies aimed at fostering a more competitive market are working.

read more

OpenMedia.ca: First decision to come out of CRTC’s Let’s Talk TV consultation is a win for Canadians

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November 6, 2014 – In response to this morning’s announcement by the CRTC regarding new rules that will allow Canadians to cancel or change their Internet, television, or telephone services without giving 30-day notice, OpenMedia.ca Campaigns Manager Josh Tabish said,

“We are pleased to see that the first decision coming out of the CRTC’s Let’s Talk TV consultation is a positive step forward for Canadians. During the consultation, we spoke with thousands of Canadians who expressed their dissatisfaction with the lack of choice and flexibility in offerings from the Big Telecom providers. But now we’re able to (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: Big Telecom customer mistreatment is still running rampant, as official report confirms 11,340 complaints in just 12 months

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CCTS Annual Report reveals sharp 74% rise in complaints about misleading wireless contracts. Bell and its subsidiaries accounted for over 40% of all telecom complaints.

November 4, 2014 – Mistreatment of Canadian telecom customers is still running rampant, according to official figures released today by the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services (CCTS). The CCTS Annual Report revealed that unhappy Canadians complained 11,340 times last year about their telecom service, the 2nd highest total of the past five years.

The Big Three – Bell, Rogers, and Telus, along with their subsidiaries – accounted for 77% of all complaints, (Read more…)

OpenMedia.ca: OpenMedia.ca builds definitive case for opening Canada’s wireless networks to lower prices for all Canadians

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Following official confirmation from the Competition Bureau that the Big Three are artificially keeping prices high, OpenMedia and CIPPIC’s joint submission to the CRTC sets out common sense steps for fixing Canada’s broken wireless market

October 24, 2014 –Bold measures are required to reduce cell phone bills, rein in the Big Three, and fix Canada’s broken wireless market. That’s the message of a detailed policy submission (PDF) to the CRTC by CIPPIC and community-based OpenMedia.ca, which is running a nationwide Unblock Canada campaign aimed at lowering prices and improving wireless choice for Canadians. The launch of (Read more…)