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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

CRTC may bankrupt Canadian online businesses, reduce choice, and censor

I don't really need to offer any commentary. This piece by Michael Geist in the Toronto Star pretty much speaks for itself:

Those promoting a regulatory approach propose a range of measures. For example, SOCAN calls for the introduction of a minimum of 51 per cent Canadian content requirements for Canadian commercial websites. ACTRA argues the commission should licence new media undertakings, arguing ``the commission should also require that those who are making programs available from Canada, through the Internet or to mobile receiving devices, for viewing at a time and place chosen by the user be licensed.'' In fact, ACTRA maintains that the definition of Internet broadcasting should be expansively interpreted to even include user-generated content, which could turn thousands of Canadians into regulated broadcasters.

Posted by Mike Brock on December 17, 2008 in Web/Tech | Permalink

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Comments

I find this extremely frightening. Not only should the CRTC stay the hell out of regulating the Internet, the CRTC should be dismantled completly. Fancy Pants Trudeau is dead and everything that A-hole created should suffer the same fate. Canadians need more freedom of thought and expression not less. The Trudeau thought police and the teat suckers who benefit from this particular type of censorship need to take off the Jackboots and stay the hell out of our lives. The Internet is the last bastion of freedom to choose for Canadians. If the CRTC worms their way into controlling the Internet, where will they stop? Trudeaus Statism must be buried in the ground, along with it's creator.

Posted by: Sean | 2008-12-17 8:30:06 PM


CRTC may Bankrupt Canadian Online Businesses, Reduce Choice, and Censor
Posted by Mike Brock on December 17, 2008

I guess Mike wasn't that sick that he couldn't post this piece. The CRTC, ACTRA etc. are huffing and puffing when they all know there is sweet FA they can do to the internet unless they intend to start blocking sites like China. A Canadian site that "breaks" the law as the CRTC sees it can simply get hosted in the US.

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-12-17 8:47:18 PM


Stig, you may be right. But remember when the Pembina Institue and Sierra Club etc, were considered radical groups? Now they are regularly quoted and, probably, consulted. Only bad can come of this!

Most companies would not do as you say, they will just comply with the law.

Posted by: TM | 2008-12-17 9:53:19 PM


Sean, agreed. This is very scary stuff, much more scary than the net neutrality stuff (i.e. ISP socialism) that Geist favours.

Are there any countries which have a licensing regime like the ones being proposed for all commercial websites or even even just for online media?

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2008-12-18 1:09:57 AM


Aren't the Conservatives in power???

Posted by: Tim Trudeau | 2008-12-18 1:20:01 AM


"Aren't the Conservatives in power???"

I hope that Tony Clement will do whatever he can to prevent this, but I would feel much more comfortable with Maxime Bernier back as Industry Minister. He would never stand for this and would fight tooth and nail against it. For the short time that he held the post, Bernier was the CRTC's worst nightmare.

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2008-12-18 1:39:36 AM


Non issue.

Your commercial content will likely stream off of one of hundreds of nodes on Akamai's network (with that RTSP stream space resold to you by a hosting provider), much of that network is physically based out of the USA. Unlike a terrestrial radio broadcast with a fixed origin point (Studio A, Tower B, Repeaters C,D and E) your file may originate from one of hundreds of mirrored servers, then be delivered packet by packed from a flurry of different relay sites, with their origin point renegotiated during the delivery of the product.

Good luck regulating that. You'd have to collect detailed log files from every single recipient's computer since these are user-initiated sessions, unlike an unsolicited email.

For a simple example, read check out the raw source of any two emails from the same person in your inbox. Odds are during the course of the week their messages travel across entirely different chains of servers and routers just to get to you. Same content, same author, totally dynamic delivery system.

Posted by: Steve | 2008-12-18 9:32:59 AM


"Your commercial content will likely stream off of one of hundreds of nodes on Akamai's network (with that RTSP stream space resold to you by a hosting provider), much of that network is physically based out of the USA. Unlike a terrestrial radio broadcast with a fixed origin point (Studio A, Tower B, Repeaters C,D and E) your file may originate from one of hundreds of mirrored servers, then be delivered packet by packed from a flurry of different relay sites, with their origin point renegotiated during the delivery of the product."

With all do respect, I don't think it's a non-issue. Non-issue to you, maybe. But not a non-issue to Canadian ISPs and hosting providers who will lose business in the very scenario you are describing.

Posted by: Mike Brock | 2008-12-18 1:59:13 PM


With all do respect, I don't think it's a non-issue. Non-issue to you, maybe. But not a non-issue to Canadian ISPs and hosting providers who will lose business in the very scenario you are describing.
Posted by: Mike Brock | 2008-12-18 1:59:13 PM

You mean ISP's like Bell and Rogers who own lots of commercial broadcasting / cable / satellite properties that receive so much protection from the CRTC that they essentially are licenses to print money. Get me some Kleenex while I cry for Bell and Rogers.

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-12-18 3:05:15 PM


"You mean ISP's like Bell and Rogers who own lots of commercial broadcasting / cable / satellite properties that receive so much protection from the CRTC that they essentially are licenses to print money. Get me some Kleenex while I cry for Bell and Rogers."

No, actually. I'm talking about hundreds or thousands of small hosting businesses. Even some blogs. After all, they are talking about targeting "individual content providers".

Don't be so dense.

There is a huge small and medium business component that would be directly effected.

Posted by: Mike Brock | 2008-12-18 3:44:05 PM


After all, they are talking about targeting "individual content providers".
Posted by: Mike Brock | 2008-12-18 3:44:05 PM

ISP's and web hosting services are not content providers, they are content distributors. Don't be so dense. Bring this point up on your show on Wednesday and we can discuss it.

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-12-18 3:58:46 PM


What constitutes a "commercial website"? If a Canadian has a blog devoted to their love of classic 1960s Star Trek, and they sign up for a Google AdWords account, will the CRTC step in and force them to have 51% content about The Starlost? Or maybe 51% of their blog will have to be devoted to William Shatner and James Doohan? Will ebay.ca have to make sure over 51% of the items available for purchase are located in Canada, or even made in Canada? I certainly cannot wait for the government-mandated canadian content restrictions on porn sites. We've lost far too much of our extreme porn talent to Los Angeles. The great Canadian social engineering dream of conditioning OUR shut-in perverts that parkas are sexy will finally be realized!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | 2008-12-19 12:46:19 PM



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