Canadians Ticked Off Over Usage-Based Pricing

Canadian journalist Jason Koblovskly complains about usage-based billing and how much it sucks in a non-shocking blog post. Like many of his fellow citizens (at least those paying attention) he is angry that internet service providers are crying poverty and implementing pricing that charges users for both uploads and downloads.

In his post he points out that an online petition to the Canadian government demanding an end to usage based billing has managed to garner nearly 190,000 signatures. There seems to be some momentum towards ending this practice, with federal Liberals and the NDP already calling for an end to it. Meanwhile, Industry Minister Tony Clement is waiting for the results of an appeal with the Canadian regulator the CRTC.

While Koblovskly lays out a number of reasons why this is all bad medicine for Canadian citizens and business in general, his main point is that usage-based billing only serves the interests of ISPs. Canada needs net neutrality rules ASAP.

You can read the whole thing here. Image credit.

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  1. 0
    DorthLous says:

    Argh! Rule: You can’t have information travel faster than light. You CAN have things travel faster (instantaneous change like interference or removal of such), but because of a couple of quantum rules, you STILL can’t pass information (like piggy-backing waves on top of laser. It goes faster than light, but no information is carried.)

    Anyway, a lot of extremelly good options are already seeing the light of day, some are being made availalbe this spring across Canada for higher paying trial customer, technologies that will trickle down extremely quickly.

  2. 0
    Left4Dead says:

    Unmetered Internet usage forces ISPs to upgrade their hardware and backbone, thus forcing prices down for everyone and encourages competition.  ISPs like Comcast want to create metered usage because they know that they won’t have to upgrade as often and can charge as much as they like per GB, which equates to more profit.  This is all about maximizing profit, not forwarding humanity.

    Fortunately, in the next decade (or two), Comcast and similar ISPs will hopefully be obsoleted by advancing research in quantum mechanics (e.g. quantum entanglement of photons).

    – Left4Dead

    Why are zombies always eating brains? I want to see zombies that eat toes for a living. Undead-related pun intended.

    -- Left4Dead --

  3. 0
    HarmlessBunny says:

    Thanks for the sarcasim! Actually there has been success. Our government announced they are going to review the CRTC ruling due to the large amount of petitions filled out. So yes, our outrage on an electronic document worked.


    ——— James Fletcher, member of ECA Canada

  4. 0
    Father Time says:

    I don’t understand why Canada would do this in the first place. Did they honestly expect that people would like it?


    Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it’s over they have the same positions they started in.

  5. 0
    Flamespeak says:

    GRRRR! I am going to express my outrage by typing my name to an electronic document! That will show them! /sarcasm

    If your opponent doesn’t care about your opinion in the slightest, something like this is trivial. I wish my bros to the North would wig out hard over something like this to keep it from spilling down south hard. I can see some business folks now: "Just think, if you get a large chunk of laid back Canucks fuming and having massive demonstrations and the like to something like this, what do you think the always angry Americans will do if we try that in their neck of the woods?"


  6. 0
    HarmlessBunny says:

    Calling all Canadians!

    Please go to and sign up on this petition now! We are already getting jilted by the CRTC for years with horrible regulations with telecommunications. Now this is happening? Come on, this is ridiculous. Every Canadian here, please just take 30 seconds and fill out the petition. Can be filled out also at:


    ——— James Fletcher, member of ECA Canada

  7. 0
    kagirinai says:

     You’re missing the point. It’s not a suggested solution, it’s a mockery of the fact that our ISPs feel that transmitting data over established and paid-for lines is somehow worth more than physically shipping the same data on a new device.

    The reality is that we can’t equate bandwidth to storage, because they’re not even remotely the same. But the analogy is still good for showing the obscene prices being proposed in some sort of context.

  8. 0
    SimonBob says:

    Insofar as I agree that yes, we overpay for all forms of digital communication in this country, the argument presented on that image is flawed.  It’s akin to saying it’s cheaper to drive a car than to fly by plane.  Cost isn’t the only issue; delivery and infrastructure have to be taken into account.  Also, it’s remarkably difficult to play multiplayer Call of Duty on a solid state drive.


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