Digital rights group OpenMedia releases comprehensive election platform packed with ideas crowdsourced from Canadians
August 27, 2015 – It's as if the entire city of London Ontario banded together to save the Internet. Shaped by more than 250,000 people and launching today, Canada's Digital Future is a crowd-sourced election platform packed with ideas from everyday citizens. It’s an initiative of digital rights group Openmedia, which is urging people to consider Canada's digital future when casting their vote this election.
While OpenMedia won’t be endorsing any political party, it does plan to meet the main parties and report back as to which are most committed to implementing its platform. Thousands of people have already pledged to vote for the future of the Internet in the upcoming election.
“Whether it’s telecom price-gouging, reckless spying legislation, or abusive copyright notices, failed digital policies are hurting Canadians,” said OpenMedia’s communications manager David Christopher. “Young people in particular are speaking up for a better way forward, because Canada can’t afford to keep falling behind our international counterparts. That’s why this election will be the most important Canadian Internet users have ever faced.”
OpenMedia criticizes police push for warrantless access to private Internet subscriber data
OpenMedia is extremely concerned by the proposal put forward by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police that would make it far easier for police to access Canadians’ online records without a warrant. The police proposal flies in the face of a landmark pro-privacy ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada last year.
Yesterday it was reported that police want expedited warrantless access to Canadians’ private Internet subscriber data, proposing three different options that would see them receive information about any Canadian from their telecommunications companies without judicial oversight or accountability.
Trans-Pacific Partnership text reveals that U.S. pressure could result in new rules for Canadians that allow for website blocking, and new criminal penalties for copyright infringement
August 5, 2015 – Recently leaked documents from the Intellectual Property chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) reveal that the secretive trade agreement would require Canada to make drastic changes to its copyright law, causing significant damage to free expression and restricting access to knowledge. The TPP is already shaping up as a major issue in the recently launched federal election.
Under the TPP, Canada’s copyright system, which underwent a review as recently as 2012, would be amended with no public consultation. Today’s leaks reveal how the TPP would lengthen copyright terms, propose new criminal penalties for circumventing ‘digital locks’, and introduce site-blocking rules at the behest of U.S. media giants.
Plan lays out tangible steps for federal government to take to restore Canadians’ digital privacy
July 23, 2015 – Today OpenMedia released a new online video, based on input from over 125,000 Canadians, which outlines a clear plan to address Canada’s stark privacy deficit. With Bill C-51, warrantless spying, thousands of privacy breaches, and a multi-billion dollar government spy palace, Canadians have serious reasons to be concerned about their privacy rights — and have stepped up to build a solution.
The video sets out three key priorities for how Parliament should strengthen Canada’s privacy safeguards, by 1) requiring a warrant to spy on Canadians’ personal lives, 2) ending mass surveillance, and 3) embracing accountability for Canada’s spy agencies. It’s all part of Canada’s Privacy Plan, which found that over 80% of Canadians support wide-ranging pro-privacy reforms, and over 94% want a comprehensive parliamentary review of surveillance oversight mechanisms.
New rules ensure that Canadians will be able to access an affordable range of services from a variety of providers outside Canada’s telecom giants
July 22, 2015 – A major ruling today from the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) signals a significant step forward for Canadians’ ability to access affordable Internet options independent of Canada’s large telecom providers, says OpenMedia.ca.
In late 2014, OpenMedia delivered crowdsourced input from over 30,000 Canadians as part of the hearing that informed today’s decision–and is claiming victory.
The ruling is the first step towards ensuring small independent ISPs are able to sell fibre Internet in Canada, which should expand access and affordability for users. Canada currently lags behind most developed countries when it comes to fibre access. Canada’s Big Telecom operators currently control 92% of the Internet market and Canadians face some of the highest prices for Internet in the industrialized world.
75,000-strong Save The Link Campaign welcomes the rejection of proposal that could have resulted in severe repercussions for free speech online
July 9, 2015 – Today the European Parliament firmly rejected a proposal that could have resulted in a new EU-wide ‘Link Tax’ with costly implications for Internet users across Europe and the world. A similar ‘Link Tax’ was introduced in Spain last December, where it forced Google News to shut operations, and resulted in web traffic to Spanish news sites plunging.