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Canadian Internet Updatepalooza.

There’s a few points of interest regarding the issues facing Canadian internet access this past week, which actually makes for some good reading, so here we go.

With regards to the Bell throttling issue raised by the CAIP, the Globe & Mail has an article that suggests that despite ruling against the CAIP’s request for interim relief on the issue,  the CRTC is leaning towards the CAIP’s position.  Part of the CRTC mandate is to ensure that there’s no interference with the application and development of information technologies, and Bell throttling CAIP members sounds exactly like this.  A ruling on the issue is expected sometime this month.

With Bill C61 making it’s way through the system, a new poll from Angus Reid shows that Canadians are split on the changes.  One of the most interesting points is the following…

The findings reveal that a large majority of respondents (76%) believe the proposed amendments to the Copyright Act are being introduced as a result of lobbying by the North American music industry.  For many years, strengthening copyright infringement laws has been a recurrent topic in the United States.

Another finding worth mentioning is that, while most Canadians recognize the purpose of the new changes is to stop people from profiting from illegal file-sharing (67%), two-thirds (66%) feel that the anticipated changes are merely symbolic, and that the government will not be able to enforce them.  Three-in-five respondents (63%) foresee millions of lawsuits against Canadians if the new modifications take effect, and more than half (54%) believe the changes are necessary, because current regulations are outdated and need to be reformed.

Less than half of all respondents think the proposed amendments to the Copyright Act balance the rights of copyright holders and consumers (47%), and two-in-five (44%) state that emerging artists will not be able to easily promote their work as a result of the changes.

There’s a PDF of the poll data available at the Angus Reid site.

The Globe also has an interesting article about the slow adoption rate of next gen internet access such as Fibre To The Home, largely from Bell and Rogers.  It’s an interesting read in it’s own right…

Experts agree that Canada is going to have to start building wider highways soon if it wants to remain internationally competitive. It might take a push from the government to get the telcos moving, but Canada can’t afford to be complacent, according to Joe Savage, president of the FTTH Council.

“We can get by with what we have, no one is ranting in front of city hall or forming a conga line in from of the Bell Canada building. It will have to be a big difference before people notice,” he said.

“The government is going to have to step in and say, ‘Look, we need to be internationally competitive and we need to take advantage of teleworking, and the remote education capabilities of a FTTH network.'”

Finally, Michael Geist has posted the 3rd part of his is 5 part series about a fictional family living under the updated Copyright Act.  Here’s the start to it…

In the morning, Josee teaches a class on media in the digital world.  The class is conducted in a distance-learning classroom and includes both her students and students from a school in Edmonton using Alberta’s SuperNet network.  This is the second year that she has run the course and she is using the same lessons, which include extensive copies of articles for course materials.  In the afternoon, Josee teaches a communications class, making use of a website that features a copyright and an “all rights reserved” notice.  A student in the class presents a research assignment that features short excerpts from a DVD copy of the movie Broadcast News and passages that are cut-and-pasted from an electronic book that contains a digital lock.  Josee is a big Calgary Flames fan.  The Flames are playing that night with the game broadcast on pay-per-view.  Josee has a dinner commitment, but decides to buy the game and record it with her PVR to watch when she gets home.

If Industry Minister Jim Prentice’s Bill C-61 becomes law, all of these copying activities arguably violate the law.

You can also find the first 2 parts on his site.

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