160,000 Strong Petition to Stop Internet Metering to Become Largest Online Action in Canadian History
One Hundred and Sixty Thousand Canadians Protest New Internet Fees
January 31, 2011 – The citizen engagement group OpenMedia.ca has announced that an unprecedented 160,000 Canadians have signed the Stop The Meter petition. The petition calls on Canadian political leaders, including Liberal Party Leader Michael Ignatieff and Conservative Industry Minister Tony Clement, to take action to stop new Internet usage fees, or "Internet metering".
The Stop The Meter campaign is shaping up to be the largest online action in Canadian history.
After the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) made a decision that allowed Big Telecom to control the cost of the Internet, the number of citizens involved with the Stop The Meter campaign began to grow at the rapid rate of over 15,000 per day, and is quickly coming to represent a significant portion of Canada’s voting population.
Though the New Democratic Party (NDP) of Canada did recently come out in opposition to Internet metering, the Liberal and Conservative Parties have remained awkwardly silent.
“Considering the historic public outcry on this issue, we expect the other parties to be scrambling to endorse the Stop The Meter campaign,” said OpenMedia.ca founder Steve Anderson. “If they aren't, they probably should be.
“Canadian voters appear to be unanimous in their distain for greedy big telecom corporations, and the CRTC's role in enabling them to gouge out citizens’ pocket books, and unfairly hogtie competing independent ISPs. They know that these unnecessary fees will stifle innovation, ground-up entrepreneurialism, and social progress ”
Via Facebook, Twitter, and email, OpenMedia.ca has heard from business owners, media producers, and citizens who have expressed that Internet metering will impede their lifestyles and livelihoods. They are now waiting to see whether their government will represent them, and overturn the CRTC’s usage-based billing decision.
Communications Manager, OpenMedia.ca
OpenMedia.ca is a national, non-partisan, non-profit public engagement organization working to advance and support an open and innovative communications system in Canada. Our primary goal is to increase public awareness and informed participation in Canadian media, cultural, information, and telecommunication policy formation.
About Stop The Meter
In October, Canadians were outraged by the news that the CRTC had decided to allow Bell and other big Internet service providers (ISPs) to impose new fees on independent ISPs – usage-based billing. Now every Internet user in Canada is likely to feel the sting of a less affordable Internet, and a less competitive Internet service market. Recognizing the importance of this issue, OpenMedia.ca launched the Stop The Meter campaign.
Since its inception, this multi-platform petition, based at http://www.StopTheMeter.ca and in French at http://openmedia.ca/compteur, become a record breaker and a game changer. Over 160,000 names have now been added to the website, Facebook, Twitter, and in print.