Posted by Jamie Forestell
Teksavvy CEO Rocky Gaudrault and VP of Network Services for Primus, Matt Stein will get their chance to testify before a commons committee today. Last week Konrad von Finckenstein of the CRTC was ordered by the government to reconsider the ruling, or they would intervene. Today, von Finckenstein officially announced the CRTC was launching a review “of its own initiative.” “The great concern expressed by Canadians over this issue is telling of how much the Internet has become an integral part of their lives,” he added.
Well, I would like to think it was the signatures of the 420,320 Canadians (at the time of this article, sure to exceed 600,000) that triggered this overruling, so continue to speak your voice.
If you would like to listen live during the committee session, it begins at 3:30 PM ET and you can listen here.
CRTC to review billing practices for wholesale Internet services
OTTAWA-GATINEAU, february 8, 2011 —The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) today launched, of its own initiative, a proceeding to review its decisions on billing practices that would have applied to the residential customers of Small Internet service providers (Small ISPs).
“The great concern expressed by Canadians over this issue is telling of how much the Internet has become an integral part of their lives,” said Konrad von Finckenstein, Q.C., Chairman of the CRTC. “Our approach is based on two fundamental principles:
- as a general rule, ordinary consumers served by Small ISPs should not have to fund the bandwidth used by the heaviest residential Internet consumers, and
- it is in the best interest of consumers that Small ISPs, which offer competitive alternatives to the Large Distributors, should continue to do so.
With these principles in mind, we will be reviewing our decisions with fresh eyes and look forward to hearing the views of Canadians.”
Following a series of decisions, the CRTC had given Large Distributors the permission to change their billing practices for the residential Internet services provided to wholesale customers (i.e. the Small ISPs). Starting on March 1, 2011, the residential customers of Small ISPs would have been subject to additional charges for going over specific bandwidth caps. The CRTC has suspended the implementation of these decisions pending the outcome of the proceeding launched today.
The CRTC is seeking comments on:
Interested parties may submit their comments by April 29, 2011, by filling out the online form, by writing to the Secretary General, CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N2, or by fax, at 819-994-0218.
The CRTC is an independent public authority that regulates and supervises broadcasting and telecommunications in Canada.
UPDATE: Well it appears the CRTC wants some help from us Canadians to define what the internet actually means to us. Which I think would indicate that they have no business making decisions for issues they clearly do not understand. Please keep the names coming. Shaw Cable has advised they will cancel all usage based billing and continue to listen to what their customers want. Shaw is one of the first ISP in Canada to roll out Fiber to the Premise (FTTP) as well as offer 100MB internet service. And no, Bell Canada does not offer fiber even though they name their packages with names like “fibe25”. Notice the Fibe is missing an R purposely. Misleading? Yup!