City Councillor Puts Forward Groundbreaking Motion to Stop Usage-Based Internet Billing

Vancouver may become first city to ask CRTC to reverse Internet metering decision

December 9, 2010 – Today, the City of Vancouver made public a motion proposing that they call on the CRTC (Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission) to reverse their decision concerning usage-based billing (Internet metering). This is the first city in Canada to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Canadian public in opposition to financial penalties for ‘too much’ Internet use.

The motion, put forward by Councillor Andrea Reimer, seeks to prevent big Telecom companies from imposing usage-based billing on the independent Internet Service Providers (indie ISPs) that purchase wholesale broadband from them. It argues that the imposition of usage-based billing will stifle innovation, harm jobs, and make it more difficult to access services.

This follows overwhelming participation in the Stop The Meter petition, launched by public engagement group OpenMedia.ca, which demonstrated that Canadians en masse are vehemently opposed to Internet metering.

The erosion of diversity in Canada’s telecommunications market, and the impediment to the free production and distribution of online content, are also cited in the motion as consequences of “unjust financial limitations” on how many gigabytes of usage Big Telecom’s indie competitors can provide to their customers.

OpenMedia.ca stands firmly behind the motion in Vancouver, and hopes that other municipal and provincial governments will follow suit.

“The fact that representatives of the city of Vancouver feel compelled to speak out on this issue is yet another testament to how overwhelmingly unpopular the CRTC's decision is,” said Steve Anderson, OpenMedia.ca’s National Coordinator. “While the CRTC is sitting back allowing Big Telecom to impede online choice and innovation, it is good to know that there are people in government working to do what is best for the public, and support a robust and open Internet.”

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 organization working to advance and support an open and innovative communications system in Canada. Its primary goal is to increase public awareness and informed participation in Canadian media, cultural, information, and telecommunication policy formation.