SaveOurNet.ca: Coalition rallies public to support Open Internet

Press Release
For Immediate Release
November 12, 2008

SaveOurNet.ca is calling on citizens to contact the CRTC before it hands down its decision on the Canadian Alliance of Internet Service Provider’s (CAIP) application to have Bell cease and desist from its throttling of P2P Internet traffic. The CRTC decision is expected to be issued any day now.

SaveOurNet.ca coalition co-founder Steve Anderson explains, “it is crucial that the CRTC rule that Bell must cease throttling to prevent Canada becoming the backwater of the Internet. Allowing Bell, Rogers and other ISPs to throttle third party Internet traffic limits ISP competition and puts the breaks on online innovation and free speech.”

Throttling not only restricts the services that users have paid for, it also hinders innovation, entrepreneurship, new media and freedom of speech. The CRTC needs to ensure in its ruling that Canada maintains “net neutrality”, the guiding rule that preserves a free, open and non-discriminatory Internet. Net neutrality mandates that ISPs operate their networks without regard to the content that flows over them.

If Bell continues to throttle access to the Internet in a discriminatory way (by, for example, actively manipulating traffic flow speeds for Third Party ISPs), independent and small-scale media producers won’t be able to effectively serve their audiences. Allowing Bell, Rogers and other ISPs to continue their throttling practices will eliminate competition, restrict freedom in the flow of information, and remove transparency in Canada's Internet environment.

Many public interest groups have argued that Bell's discriminatory throttling practices violate of Section 27(2) of the Telecommunications Act, which states, “No Canadian carrier shall, in relation to the provision of a telecommunications service or the charging of a rate for it, unjustly discriminate or give an undue or unreasonable preference toward any person, including itself, or subject any person to an undue or unreasonable disadvantage.”

SaveOurNet.ca urges citizens to contact the CRTC to ensure that Big Telecoms do not get control of the Internet. Canadians can quickly and easily send their comments to CRTC by visiting:
http://saveournet.ca/content/take-action



For more information contact:
Steve Anderson
Campaign For Democratic Media
National Coordinator
(604) 837-5730
steve@democraticmedia.ca



SaveOurNet.ca is a coalition of citizens, businesses, and public interest groups fighting to protect our Internet's level playing field.



SaveOurNet.ca is coordinated by Campaign for Democratic Media (CDM). CDM is a network of public interest organizations and people pushing for media democracy in Canada.