Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream Calgary Herald: What do roaming rates really cost?

This is a big step forward and validation of what Canadians have been saying for years! The CRTC have just ruled that telecom giant Rogers discriminates against affordable indie providers – crushing choice and keeping your wireless prices high. If you’re tired of getting gouged on roaming rates, speak out at

Article by the Calgary Herald

Wireless carriers in Canada have been banned from imposing exclusivity conditions in contracts that forced smaller firms to use more expensive roaming networks.

read more Regulators find that Telecoms have engaged in systematic “unjust discrimination” to stifle indie providers and keep prices high


CRTC decision exposes how Big Telecom giant Rogers engaged in “unjust discrimination” aimed at blocking Canadians from accessing affordable, independent wireless options

July 31, 2014 – A landmark decision from the CRTC today has confirmed that telecom giant Rogers has engaged in “unjust discrimination” toward independent cell phone providers, such as Mobilicity and Wind Mobile. Responding to the CRTC’s decision, warns that Industry Minister James Moore’s recent measures to cap wholesale wireless rates do not go far enough, and bold action is required to rein in Canada’s Big Three giants from abusing their market power.

The (Read more…) AlphaBeatic: Anyone else feel like they have too much of that pesky Internet hanging around?

“We have too much Internet here in Canada” said literally no one ever.

Article by Peter Nowak for AlphaBeatic

If you’re looking for some good summer reading, check out a recently released report from the Organization for Economic Development and Co-operation titled “The Development of Fixed Broadband Networks.” It’s page-turning stuff that’s as addictive as any trashy novel. If you’re a nerd for telecom policy stuff, of course.

read more AlphaBeatic: How both Canada and the U.S. are lagging behind

Why Canadians need to look farther than the U.S. for sensible cell phone policy.

Article by Peter Nowak for AlphaBeatic

When discussing the state of telecommunications services and their respective prices in Canada, industry defenders often point to the United States in their rationalizations.

read more AlphaBeatic: Canadians want lower prices and greater choice

Tens of thousands of Canadians are speaking out for lower cell phone bills – and this report suggests our pressure could be starting to deliver results. Keep up the pressure at

Article by Peter Nowak for AlphaBeatic

Something very unusual is happening in Canadian wireless services: for the first time in a long time, the average bill might actually be set to go down.

read more Canadaland: Rogers has some ‘splaining to do

This telecom giant is showing a disturbing lack of transparency when it comes to how it shared Canadians’ private information with government and what they received in exchange for that information. If this gets you as riled up as we are, go to right now and demand better.

Article by Jesse Brown for Canadaland

Last week, Rogers announced that they were getting out of the snitch business. Until then, the company ratted out its own customers to government agencies hundreds of thousands of times every year. Without asking for a warrant, Rogers provided subscriber data to authorities that (Read more…) Michael Geist: 2 out of 3 ain’t enough

Two of Canada’s biggest telecoms have done the right thing and publicly announced that they will not share subscribers’ private information without a warrant any more. It doesn’t seem like much to ask for, but Bell is still holding back. Add to the pressure at

Article by Michael Geist

In the aftermath of the Supreme Court of Canada’s Spencer decision, several leading Canadian ISPs have publicly announced that they have changed their practices on the disclosure of subscriber information (including basic subscriber information such as name and address) to law enforcement. For example, Rogers announced that it will (Read more…) Michael Geist: Come Back With a Warrant: How Will the Canadian Government Respond to the Supreme Court?

Tens of thousands of Canadians have spoken out about how the government is obtaining our private information without a warrant. Following a recent pro-privacy Supreme Court ruling, the ball is in the government’s court. How do you think Peter MacKay will respond?

Article by Michael Geist

Canadian Internet and telecom providers have, for many years, disclosed basic subscriber information, including identifiers such as name, address, and IP address, to law enforcement without a warrant. The government has not only supported the practice, but actively encouraged it with legislative proposals designed to grant full civil and criminal immunity for voluntary disclosures (Read more…) City News: Rogers, Telus will no longer hand customer info to police without a warrant

Under pressure from thousands of Canadians, two of Canada’s telecom giants have announced they’ll no longer hand your private information over to the government without a warrant. Way to go, Canada and thanks for speaking out at!

Article by Jim Bronskill for City News

Two major telecommunications firms — Rogers and Telus — say they will no longer routinely give basic customer information to police and security agencies without first seeing a warrant.

read more Alphabeatic: Wireless data prices and the collective cost to our intelligence

Is your wireless bill making you dumber towards the end of the month?

Article by Peter Nowak for Alphabeatic

It dawned on me recently that I tend to be dumber at the end of the month than at the beginning. It actually has nothing to do with lunar cycles, but everything to do with billing cycles. Specifically, my cellphone bill.

read more Government’s own report confirms Canadian wireless prices still amongst highest in industrialized world, while more affordable new entrants starting to have positive impact on costs


New entrants hugely outperform the Big Three when it comes to wireless costs – but the Big Three is still blocking many Canadians from these affordable alternatives

July 14, 2014 – A new government report released this morning has confirmed that Canadians are still paying some of the highest prices in the industrialized world for wireless service. The Wall Report, which was commissioned by the CRTC, also confirms that new entrants like Wind and Mobilicity offer Canadians a far better deal than the Big Three, especially when it comes to mobile data and roaming in the U. (Read more…) 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 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


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 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…) 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 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:

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


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…) 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 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 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…) 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 Prevented Telus/Mobilicity takeover is welcome news, but more govt action needed to level playing field and ensure wireless choice

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

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, 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…) 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

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…) 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…)