Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream David Ellis: Digital Canada 150: The ‘strategy’ without a strategy

Experts are slamming the government’s recently released Digital Canada plan. This analysis from David Ellis highlights how the plan’s lack of strategy means Canada will fall further behind other industrialized nations. All this while the digital divide continues to grow. Want more from our digital future? Visit to push for change.

Article by David Ellis

Four years and they give us 26 lousy pages?

read more Michael Geist: Government’s Privacy Bill S-4 will undermine Canadians’ privacy

Bill S-4: the not-so-little Privacy Bill that wasn’t.

Article by Michael Geist

Earlier this week, the government introduced the Digital Privacy Act (Bill S-4), the latest attempt to update Canada’s private sector privacy law. The bill is the third try at privacy reform stemming from the 2006 PIPEDA review, with the prior two bills languishing for months before dying due to elections or prorogation.

read more Michael Geist: The outlook for Canada’s digital future is not rosy

BY THE NUMBERS: the government’s Digital Canada 150 plan will allow Canada to fall behind other industrialized nations and worsen the digital divide between Canadians. Think that’s not good enough? Speak out at

Article by Michael Geist

The release of Digital Canada 150, the federal government’s long-awaited digital strategy, included a clear connectivity goal: 98 percent access to 5 Mbps download speeds by 2019. While the government promises to spend $305 million on rural broadband over the next five years and touts the goal as “a rate that enables e-commerce, high-resolution video, employment opportunities and distance education”, (Read more…) Your Daily Digital Digest for Friday, April 11, 2014

Your news links for today:

Privacy Act Ignores Reckless and Expensive Government Surveillance – Epoch Times Information commissioner finds three Tory staffers interfered in with access-to-information requests – iPolitics Digital Canada 150: why the Tory plan is risky, not just foolish – Life on the Broadband Internet SaskTel CEO Ron Styles Shows How Wireless Pricing Is Totally Unfair – Huffington Post For TELUS Broadband Customers, UBB Usage Based Billing starts June 1st – DSL Reports Swedish ISP deletes all retained customer data in wake of EU court ruling – PC World USTR Warns That EU-Only Cloud To Avoid NSA Surveillance (Read more…) Globe and Mail: CSEC dodges questions on relationship with Big Three telecom companies

Recently, we discovered that Big Telecom firms released Canadians’ sensitive personal information to one government agency over 18,000 times in the past year. Now, the head of Canada’s spy agency CSEC is refusing to tell a parliamentary committee how much access it has to Bell, Telus, and Rogers customer data. Think Canadians deserve to know how government agencies are using our private data? Speak up at

Article by Colin Freeze for The Globe and Mail

The head of Canada’s electronic-eavesdropping agency says he “can’t really disclose” what kinds of access it could have to data flowing through Bell, (Read more…) New privacy legislation fails to tackle Canadians’ central privacy concern: reckless and expensive government surveillance

New privacy legislation does nothing to protect Canadians from out-of-control government spying. That’s according to our own Steve Anderson, writing in today’s edition of the @Epoch Times. Please SHARE this piece and speak out for real privacy protections at

This week, Industry Minister James Moore quietly tabled a new Digital Privacy Act in the Senate. The proposed legislation should safeguard Canadians’ privacy online but sadly does not. The proposal is likely to reinforce the feeling that the Conservatives are just bad on privacy issues despite privacy’s increasing importance to daily life and our digital economy.

While the proposal (Read more…) Your Daily Digital Digest for Thursday, April 10, 2014

Your news links for today:

Heartbleed Ripped a Hole in the Internet – VICE Canada Has the NSA Been Using the Heartbleed Bug as an Internet Peephole? – WIRED Wild at Heart: Were Intelligence Agencies Using Heartbleed in November 2013? – EFF Why the Digital Privacy Act Undermines Our Privacy: Bill S-4 Risks Widespread Warrantless Disclosure – Michael Geist Facebook Sued Over Interception of Private Messages – CNW Records Labels Lose Big as Court Declares File-Sharing Tools Legal – TorrentFreak MPAA’s Lawsuit Against Megaupload Is Yet Another Broadside Attack On The Internet – Techdirt Rogers releases unlimited internet packages. I (Read more…) Vice: How much did American-made spying technology cost Canadian taxpayers?

Recently, Canadian spy agency CSEC was caught red-handed spying on thousands of innocent Canadian air travellers. Now, questions are being asked about just how many taxpayer dollars were paid to U.S. firms to purchase the technology to enable CSEC’s spying. Are you worried about how much taxpayer money is being squandered on illegal spying? Speak out by using our quick tool to get a letter in your local newspaper:

Article by Patrick McGuire and George Arthur for Vice

When Glenn Greenwald and Ryan Gallagher worked with the CBC earlier this year to report that CSEC was using (Read more…) Michael Geist: Canada’s digital strategy not keeping up with international standards

Compared to other industrialized nations, Canada’s Digital strategy lags far behind on increasing access, speed, and affordability. We can do better. Check out this Michael Geist piece comparing Canada’s recent Digital 150 document to the digital strategies of Australia and the U.K.

Article by Michael Geist

In my first post on Digital Canada 150, Canada’s digital strategy, I argued that it provided a summation of past accomplishments and some guidance on future policies, but that it was curiously lacking in actual strategies and goals. Yesterday I reviewed how Canada’s universal broadband access target lags behind much of the (Read more…) Your Daily Digital Digest for Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Your news links for today:

Heartbleed Bug prompts Revenue Canada website shutdown – CBC The Heartbleed Bug, explained – Vox Canada Revenue Agency has fired staff for privacy violations, committee hears – Globe and Mail WikiLeaks Release of NETmundial Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance – Wikileaks Digital Canada 150: Why the Canadian Strategy Misses Key Issues and Lags Behind Peer Countries – Michael Geist Digital strategy is government’s Phantom Menace – WordsByNowak Data release troubles privacy watchdog – Chronicle Herald Documents show Gogo boasted of helping law enforcement agencies spy on in-flight wifi – PandoDaily German (Read more…) 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

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…) Digital Privacy Act does almost nothing to tackle central privacy concern for Canadians: reckless and expensive government surveillance


Incoherent for government to advance protections on commercial privacy, while at same time advancing Bill C-13 which would throw door open to widespread government surveillance of law-abiding Canadians

April 7, 2014 – This morning Industry Minister Moore tabled a new Digital Privacy Act in the Senate. The proposed legislation focuses on commercial privacy issues and will update the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA).

According to, this legislation, while welcome, does almost nothing to tackle the serious problem of ongoing government surveillance against law-abiding Canadians. is leading a sustained, nationwide coalition against (Read more…) Tech Vibes: Metadata can be even more revealing than eavesdropping

Last week, we discovered that Canadian Telecom giants revealed subscribers’ sensitive personal information nearly 19,000 times in a single year. What exactly is so revealing about the data that telecom companies are handing over to law enforcement agencies without a warrant? And how will the government’s Bill C-13 make it even easier for telecoms to expose your private information? Find out in the story below.

Article by Mark Stone for Tech Vibes

read more Your Daily Digital Digest for Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Your news links for today:

European Court invalidates Data Retention Directive, says mass surveillance of metadata interferes with right to privacy – Privacy International Victory for privacy rights as ECJ rules that Data Retention Directive is invalid – Open Rights Group European ISPs Can Stop Logging User Data, Court Rules – TorrentFreak EU court rejects requirement to keep data of telecom users – Reuters Digital Canada 150: Why Canada’s Universal Broadband Goal is Among the Least Ambitious in the OECD – Michael Geist GREENWALD: ‘Mark My Words,’ Soon You’ll See The Larger Scope Of NSA Abuses – Business Insider Edward (Read more…) 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

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…) Your letters about privacy are getting published from coast to coast

This is amazing! Canadians from coast to coast have used our Letter-to-the-Editor tool to successfully publish letters in 30 major Canadian newspapers. Check them out below.

Clearly this government has it all wrong when it comes to respecting our right to privacy.

That’s the message coming across again and again in newspaper letter pages right across Canada. It looks like Canadians are fed up with repeated government attempts to invade our privacy – whether through their reckless spy agency CSEC or through Justice Minister MacKay’s new Online Spying Bill C-13.

read more Your Daily Digital Digest for Monday, April 7, 2014

Your news links for today:

Digital Canada 150: The digital strategy without a strategy – Toronto Star Bell raises prices, questions in the prairies – Angelus Novus Why Canada’s Cell Phone Plans are a Joke – r/canada The Next Five Years Could Determine Our Liberties – TorrentFreak CSEC dodges questions on relationship with Big Three telecom companies – Globe and Mail Supreme Court passes on NSA bulk phone surveillance case – Ars Technica U.S. knocks plans for European communication network – Reuters Interactive Graphic: The NSA Spying Machine – Bloomberg Businessweek

All links compiled by community member (Read more…) 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:

Article by Carmi Levy for Yahoo Finance

Canadian wireless consumers could be headed toward a digital collision.

read more James Moore’s Digital Strategy offers nothing new for Canadians

Despite high hopes, Industry Minister Moore’s Digital Strategy was a huge let-down. It looks like Canada will continue falling behind. Canadians deserve so much more – help us demand better at

Article by Brian Jackson for

It was a long time in the making, and it wasn’t worth the wait.

read more 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

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 TPP breathes life into SOPA as Obama appoints Holleyman as chief negotiator

Remember the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)? It was a reckless piece of U.S. legislation that aimed to censor the Internet through extreme copyright enforcement mechanisms. Let’s refresh our memory about SOPA’s extreme provisions:

Give the U.S. government the power to cripple any website they allege made use of copyrighted materials – Check. Force ISPs to block access to certain websites? – Check. Ban online companies from conducting businesses with “blacklisted” websites? – Check. Further criminalize “alleged” copyright infringement? – Unfortunately, check.

SOPA sparked a huge uproar from Internet users and businesses across the U.S. and the (Read more…) 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…) Your Daily Digital Digest for Friday, April 4, 2014

Your news links for today:

Charting Canada’s Digital Future – Google Canada Blog Harper Government unveils plan for Canada’s digital future – Canadian Digital Media Network Digital Canada 150 (direct link to PDF) – Industry Canada OpenText: Digital Canada 150 Announcement – USTREAM Archive Canada’s wireless policy has lacked ambition – WordsByNowak U.S. Pushes Canada To Loosen Privacy Laws – Huffington Post US confirms it made ‘Cuban Twitter’ – BBC News Germany opens hearings on U.S. spying – Washington Post

All links compiled by community member and volunteer Andrew Currie.

read more Government’s digital strategy leaves Canada stuck in the slow lane – fails to tackle stark digital divide and national digital deficit


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, 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…) Please Share: Our image about how the TPP could kick families off the Internet is going viral

Do you think a ‘censor first and ask questions later’ approach is fair?

The Trans-Pacific Partnership threatens to kick whole families off the Internet just for suspicion of copyright violation.

We’ve just released this image, and it’s already being shared far and wide on social media.

Please add your voice – SHARE this image if you think this is unfair:

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