Canadians Pledge to Vote for The Internet

April 6, 2011 – Nearly half-a-million citizens signed a petition this year to protest new Internet usage fees, and today they've turned their sights on the election.

As part of the launch of its Vote For the Internet campaign, OpenMedia.ca is releasing outreach tools today, the likes of which have never before been used in an election. One of these tools allows Canadians to pledge to vote for the Internet by calling on local politicians to become "pro-Internet candidates." Find the tool here: http://VoteNet.ca

Candidates can sign up to become pro-Internet candidates at http://openmedia.ca/candidate.

Before the end of the election, OpenMedia.ca will let Canadians know which of their riding’s candidates have committed to improve Internet access, competition, transparency, choice, and a connected future.

“Canada has become a digital laggard, and we’re looking for someone to fill the leadership vacuum,” said OpenMedia.ca Executive Director Steve Anderson. “We're happy to help citizens and candidates interact on a level playing field during this election and later when public policy is being formed."

When it comes to the Internet, citizens have shown themselves to be engaged, passionate and active. With press hailing the first social-media election, the stage is set for the pro-Internet community to push communications issues to the forefront of Canada’s leadership race.

OpenMedia.ca, the organization behind the viral Stop The Meter petition, has more Facebook followers than any Canadian political party. In the last month, the grassroots group has blown open the closed-door CRTC meeting on the future of Internet governance, and has met with both Industry Minister Tony Clement and Liberal Industry, Science and Technology Critic Marc Garneau. OpenMedia.ca's next steps begin today with the launch of the Vote for the Internet campaign.

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Contact

Lindsey Pinto
Communications Manager, OpenMedia.ca
778-238-7710
lindsey@openmedia.ca

About 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 telecommunications 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, has become a record breaker and a game changer. Over 480,000 names have now been added to the website, Facebook, Twitter, and in print.