Author Archives: Ben Klass

Yes, I’m still alive

Hi there, To anyone still following this blog, you’ll know that I haven’t written on here in a long time. I’m still studying telecoms — my MA was long ago done, and I’m now chasing after a PhD at Carleton — but have been spending my focus elsewhere. Feelsbadman. I miss writing these blogs and […]

Just say no to the Bell-MTS takeover

Last week, Bell announced a $3.1 billion deal to takeover MTS, Manitoba’s incumbent communications company. Bell is promising a windfall to stockholders, who will see their shares purchased for $40 a piece, or 20% over the share price at the time of the announcement. For regular customers, on the other hand, there’s little to celebrate […]


About a month ago or so, I turned on my Apple TV and noticed that apps for two new Canadian online video services — Shomi (jointly owned by Rogers and Shaw) and CraveTV (Bell Media) — had appeared in the user interface. The app menus are nicely integrated with the Apple TV OS, which makes […]

Get with the program, Bell

At this week’s Canadian Telecom Summit, Mary Ann Turcke gave her first public speech as President of Bell Media (Ms. Turcke formerly held the position of Group President, Media Sales, Local TV and Radio for Bell Media). The speech presented an opportunity for Bell’s management to distance itself from the unpopular views of recently-ousted Kevin […]

#newcomlaw social media archive

This past weekend, the Forum for Research and Policy in Communications held a conference at the University of Ottawa titled “Rebooting Canada’s Communications Legislation.” The well-attended event focused on the challenges facing law and policy in an environment of rapid change brought on by the Internet, and featured suggestions, insights, and analysis from many of […]

May the fourth carrier be with you

In the Berkman Center’s 2010 report on “Next Generation Connectivity,” the Harvard-based think tank classified Canada as a case of “regulatory hesitation,” due to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s less-than-enthusiastic willingness to discipline incumbent firms. This week’s release on wireless from the CRTC shows just how far we’ve come since then, but also highlights […]

Open and Equal Access for a 21st century Internet: An Open Letter to Government

In the beginning of November, CRTC Chairman JP Blais delivered a comprehensive speech to the Vancouver Board of Trade. The topic was a familiar one: trust the regulator to succeed in its quest to seek out, define, and ultimately to defend the public interest. Indeed, Mr. Blais has made his goal clear from the beginning […]

At Bell, Business is Good (short version)

It used to be that universal telephone service was achieved through a cross subsidy flowing from business to residential users. Businesses were heavy users of long distance services, which were provided above cost to ensure that all Canadians had access to local telephone service. That practice went out the window with the introduction of competition, […]

At Bell, Business is Good

In a bygone era of telecommunications policy, the Canadian state conferred regional monopoly privileges on companies such as Bell Canada and B.C. Tel (today Telus), and in return those companies were required to meet certain social goals, perhaps the most well known of which was universal service. Some might call this part of a “regulatory bargain.” […]

Roaming Cap raises questions

On June 19, omnibus budget bill C-31 received Royal Assent, amending (among many other things) the Telecommunications Act to include provisions capping the wholesale roaming rates carriers charge each other at no greater than last years’ retail rates. You may remember that reducing roaming rates was pegged as a government priority in last fall’s throne […]