Trouble in Paradise, Canadians held hostage

Free health care and enhanced social benefits come at a price. A more socially liberal government also brings a more financially liberal ecosystem as well. Stymied competition in the technosphere has always been a point of strong contention for Canadians. From anti-competitive pricing practices in the media-distribution business to a levy on physical media, America’s Hat continually receives the sharp end of the Loonie encrusted mace.

Canadians are a very connected population. 64% of the population uses a mobile phone, and in 2001 (StatsCanada) almost 50% of the country was connected via personal broadband. Interestingly, this connectedness is strictly controlled and maintained by a very small group of organizations. Canada is very exclusive when it comes to media-distribution service providers. While Bell, Telus and Rogers maintain nationwide cellular networks, their wired businesses tend to service specific regions of the country, with a fourth provider, Shaw, remaining insofar out of the cellular phone business. Heading up the West, Shaw and Telus manage Cable TV and telephone, respectively, while Rogers and Bell carry the same in the East. Until very recently, GSM cellular was exclusively Rogers territory, while Bellus (as it is so “affectionately” called) carried CDMA. With, in essence, a monopoly over their respective services, Canadians have been subjected to anti-competitive practices since the inception of service delivery. Recent entrants to the industry have attempted to shift the status quo, but due to coverage and adoption issues, newcomers such as WIND Mobile have yet to make a serious dent in the oligopolic market.

Currently, Canadian wireless providers offer 3G data that is capped post-paid at 5GB. While the combined network is among the best on the continent and capable of delivering service to over 90% of the population; Canadians are charged a substantial tariff by their providers, including up to $60 a month for their mediocre bandwidth limits. Combined with a “generous” voice plan, Canadians still cannot attain the attractive pricing that American providers have been touting as of late. Plans such as Sprint’s $99 unlimited package, leaves those North of the 49th parallel panting for more.

The price gouging is not only confined to the mobile market. The recent announcement of Netflix’s arrival to Canada has highlighted the broadband bandwidth issues that plague users from coast to coast. Rogers, who controls the cable Internet market east of Sault Ste Marie, has recently lowered their monthly data caps. Neowin has covered the changes in great detail, and quite obviously the changes are to protect their current investment in their own “On Demand” service that offers functionality similar to that of the American giant. Other providers offer soft-caps that either result in extra charges or a crippled connection until the end of a billing period. Western giant, Shaw, while offering a 25mbps connection, caps the user at 250gb a month while charging $4 short of a C-Note. As there is no competition between areas, the caps and pricing are just more hot coals on the road to connectivity. Furthermore the general market consensus on net neutrality is similar to that of the States, so high prices combined with crippled service are currently the norm.

The major issue seems to be with the de facto non-competition agreements between companies. With the privatization of the western telcos, and the deregulation of Bell in the East, the system was never designed with competition in mind. Telephone service in Canada was for a time, all about just making it happen, as the logistical difficulties involved discouraged overlapping expenditure, and government regulation further restricted the development of private enterprise in the industry. As the market has grown, the associated companies (whether it is cable, telephone, internet or wireless) seem to have maintained their regional affiliations rather than attempting to compete in regions historically controlled by other entities. This spread of service has enabled individual companies to set pricing relative to their profit margins rather than on a competitive scale, as is evident by the nearly even service pricing between areas and providers.

On the wireless side, Bell and Telus have recently begun to operate a cooperatively maintained HSPA+ network over much of their CDMA service area. Although supporting similar phones and offering true 3G services across much of the area they share with Rogers, prices have not yet fallen. Ideally with more than one provider offering service over a given area, individual providers may begin to set competitive pricing. Instead, companies cite infrastructure maintenance and expansion costs as the reason for their steadily increasing service costs. It is often argued that due to low market saturation and increased area, costs are increased, but if you were to peruse an actual total coverage map, it turns out that not only do our neighbours to the south manage infrastructure for many more clients, but also manage to do so over a larger contiguous area at a lower cost. Somehow the numbers don’t seem to add up.

Although high pricing and a definite lack of service variation between providers is frustrating to the consumer, it would be unfair to state that companies are not doing their part to drive innovation. With an expected LTE rollout in 2012, Bellus is set to have the most advanced network on the continent. Combined with the continual development of land based services such as Bell Fiber and its cable equivalents, Canadian users are not necessarily behind the eight ball. The ongoing net neutrality discussions coupled with a possible service shift due to smaller providers could be the push that is needed for fair delivery of the service desired by connected Canadians. In the meantime, it looks as though we will have to continue to grin and bear the current connectivity climate.

Image Credit: David Lea (Flickr)

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"America's Hat continually receives the sharp end of the Loonie encrusted mace."

Actually the USA is Canada's underwear; they **** on it.

I've only ever heard from Shaw when I did massive amounts of uploading. I've exceeded my download cap a bunch of times and nothing from Shaw.

I'm personally a fan of Shaw's 100mb/s service for 150$ a month. It has a 5mb/s upstream and a 500gb cap, and I'll tell you 250gb is actually pretty hard to outgrow as it is, so 500 gb/s is plenty.

And when I did exceed my caps in the days when it was lower, closer to 100MB caps, the worse I never heard boo or saw anything on a bill. I suppose if you always seriously exceeded the cap, they might have a word with you, but again - it's pretty darn hard to download that much ANd still have a life.

Xepol said,
I'm personally a fan of Shaw's 100mb/s service for 150$ a month. It has a 5mb/s upstream and a 500gb cap, and I'll tell you 250gb is actually pretty hard to outgrow as it is, so 500 gb/s is plenty.

And when I did exceed my caps in the days when it was lower, closer to 100MB caps, the worse I never heard boo or saw anything on a bill. I suppose if you always seriously exceeded the cap, they might have a word with you, but again - it's pretty darn hard to download that much ANd still have a life.

Is that a business plan? I thought their best residential plan was the $96 25 Mbps.

shaw does have cellphone coming out by the end of this year or the start of next. going to be in only major regions first though, such as calgary, edmonton and vancouver.

rajputwarrior said,
shaw does have cellphone coming out by the end of this year or the start of next. going to be in only major regions first though, such as calgary, edmonton and vancouver.

I'm looking forward to that, hopefully the have a decent offering. Rogers drops my calls ALL the bloody time and charges waaaay too much.

[Quote]Canadians are charged a substantial tariff by their providers, including up to $60 a month for their mediocre bandwidth limits.[/Quote]
Mediocre, huh? Why don't you talk about Latin America. Our speed tops the 100 KBps download rate, and 13 Kbps upload rate, and you still say it's mediocre.

I know it doesn't regards the article, but I had to say it.
BTW, we pay 100 US$ for that Internet Connection.

Jose_49 said,

Mediocre, huh? Why don't you talk about Latin America. Our speed tops the 100 KBps download rate, and 13 Kbps upload rate, and you still say it's mediocre.

I know it doesn't regards the article, but I had to say it.
BTW, we pay 100 US$ for that Internet Connection.

we hear you man. we're not the only ones and we know it. just don't go ape **** on a website.

Thanks for this article. As a Canadian I'm glad more people around the world are educated to this growing problem in Canada and how pathetic the consumer rights organizations are to do anything about it. This article is %100 true.

I finished my 3 years contract with telus and I am never ever going to commit anything which is binded by contract. I get call every other day by Indian call center agents telling me that I am eligible for free phone. LOL.. Free phone my @$$.

"Canadians are charged a substantial tariff by their providers, including up to $60 a month for their mediocre bandwidth limits. "

That is what ****es me off so much about where I live. I have Rogers and have a cap limit of 60GBs. For a Tech junkie like me it's just not enough and if I go over it's $2 per GB up to $50 if I don't stop there, That means $50 slapped on to my already $69.00 Internet bill not including phone or TV. I am so happy that Neowin brought up this issue. I am really hoping that these big companies will stop ripping us off and give us what we deserve!

What kind of BS is that intro: "Free health care and enhanced social benefits come at a price. A more socially liberal government also brings a more financially liberal ecosystem as well. "
A) this has NOTHING to do with phone regulation
B) There is virtually no competition in the phones business/internet provider in the US either.

I don't appreciate political point of view in top news of a tech site.

Yup. We get so screwed when it comes to our internet and mobile phone plans, among other things. It's really getting ridiculous. Being forced to a 3 year plans with these awful phones companies, or having ridiculous bandwidth limits on our ISPs? Spending sometimes over $60 each a month? I'm getting really fed up.

We are a nice country for the most part though

We're all aware that we're being reamed from behind. What can be done about it? And why has it taken so long for this to come to light? We should've been fighting this for a few years now at least.

Well the CRTC rules all, and is anti competition. Also the rule that all Telecommunication companies must be Canadian Owned by at least 51% , so US companies like Sprint and Verizon are not interested in Canada, especially entering a market that's less than the market of California.

Netflix is a threat to Roger, Bell, Telus and Shaw, so of course they are going to lower their cap, also since Netflix is US owned don't expect the CRTC to do anything about this.

The way Canada is operated sucks, it would be a better country if there were less socialism.

xpablo said,

The way Canada is operated sucks, it would be a better country if there were less socialism.

Like the USA? [rollseyes]

Actually we don't have free health care at all. That is a misnomer that it is free. It is a single payer insurance system where EVERYONE is covered regardless of income or preexisting condition. Turns out to be cheaper to run. Doctors work for themselves and bill the government. Premiums are paid through taxes.

BTW, I have a prepaid cell that has over $600 worth of time on it. As long as I add a $15 card each month I have basically unlimited usage.

A low price to pay I think, liberty has its price. Better that than live in a country where the government is a puppet of big corporations.

Gabureiru said,
A low price to pay I think, liberty has its price. Better that than live in a country where the government is a puppet of big corporations.

there will always be worse. does that mean we have to accept this an@l rape from the service providers?!

the article outlines some of the reasons i don't have my own mobile phone serivice. yeah i do have a phone from my mom's family plan(that is hugely more overpriced on teh same carrier-rogers, in ontario than it is in alberta for some reason).
when i've tried contract and prepaid phones in teh past i have always been screwed in some way. either the phone died as soon as the warranty wore off meaning i needed to buy a new phone for prepaid options, not to mention the inconveneince of having to go to the mall every 30 days to top up at least $20 worth of time no matter what my usage or lose all my minutes, or being in an overpriced 3 year contract for basic local mobile phone with the crappiest phone they could send me.
overall these experiences have turned me off using a mobile phone at all.
i'm quite a bit happier with internet service here though. it seems my overall experiences across shaw, bell and cogeco are overall better than what my online american friends say about their ISPs, wether they live in the country or in the city. although i'm not a big fan of some of the restrictions more recently being implemented on usage, especially considering the huge amount of unsused bandwidth we have, which is shown by the internet companies using their infrastructure for tv and on demand tv services(which overall tend to be subpar for bitrate and compression, resulting in a poor, laggy and corrupted picture in my experience.) as well as phone service.
as for the crtc they are good for nothing and only foster the problems with this industry we have here. they are not there to help the consumer only to rubberstamp big companies' efforts to gouge the consumer and screw the smaller companies from competing. which sad considering how huge the profits these companies are making without even reinvesting into infrastructure for both improvements to current service and future proofing to the degree they should be.

you can activate a pay as you go phone on a pre-paid plan, thats what I did.. bought a $60 pay as you go telus phone and activated it on my $38/month pre-paid telus plan.. no contract needed.

Dale said,
you can activate a pay as you go phone on a pre-paid plan, thats what I did.. bought a $60 pay as you go telus phone and activated it on my $38/month pre-paid telus plan.. no contract needed.
yeah but you have to fill up again within 30 days of each fill up or you lose all your minutes.

treemonster said,
yeah but you have to fill up again within 30 days of each fill up or you lose all your minutes.

I dont know about ontario but in Alberta you can buy prepaid with either petro canada or 711 and can get recharged with $50 and will have 6 months and a year validity.

Philisophically this article seemed to be all over the place. I have no idea what it's getting at aside from "Living in Canada is expensive!"

I've posted a link before, but if people are interested in the economics of Net Neutrality and global broadband availability this is a great interview: http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2010/04/benkler_on_net.html

Seemed to me that overall the Neowin article rightly complained about a lack of free market competition that would drive down costs through competition. It even cited that the current telecom situation is an artifact of a government controlled system designed to provide service at all. But then it veers toward net neutrality and newspeak like "fair delivery" whatever that means.

I wonder what the Fraser Institute has had to say on this subject lately.

I was left a bit confused over the direction of the article too. I especially didn't understand "A more socially liberal government also brings a more financially liberal ecosystem", then to go on to talk about poor competition. Doesn't a liberal system foster competition?

I would like to have read about what the Canadian government is doing to promote competition. According to this article they use the generally poor method of price regulation, though that was written in 1996:
http://www.competitionbureau.g...te/cb-bc.nsf/eng/00955.html

When I got my iPhone 3gs I snagged a 6gb data plan and pay under $70 a month with 300mins and free after 6 on days and all weekends with caller I'd and vm. I barely get to 2gb month. Why would I need unlimited? It's a waste and I'd rather pocket the $30 extra a month. As for Internet I use Teksavvy which runs off bell, and I enjoy unlimited data for 39bux. No trouble in paradise for me in Canada lol there's just many people who don't know their options I guess.

I don't know the monopolies or many of the regulations of the CRTC, but you have consider this - which a lot of people fail to realize.

The United States has nearly 300 million people. Canada has 30 million people. There is a huge customer base in the US that allows for services to be offered a bit more cheaply than in Canada. We have a huge land area to cover with service. While 90% of the population is served, there are large stretches of less densely populated area that have service but few customers.

The fact of the matter is the numbers make our services more expesnive.

deck said,
I don't know the monopolies or many of the regulations of the CRTC, but you have consider this - which a lot of people fail to realize.

The United States has nearly 300 million people. Canada has 30 million people. There is a huge customer base in the US that allows for services to be offered a bit more cheaply than in Canada. We have a huge land area to cover with service. While 90% of the population is served, there are large stretches of less densely populated area that have service but few customers.

The fact of the matter is the numbers make our services more expesnive.

Size shouldn't be an issue. If you live in the middle of the nowhere in the US you get Satelite and 2G service, there isn't cable or 3G...that's just the reality. You do have a point with population numbers...but still. It's not as if its spread out, most Canadians don't live in tundra and ice, they're closer to the border and have likely similiar population densities.

deck said,
I don't know the monopolies or many of the regulations of the CRTC, but you have consider this - which a lot of people fail to realize.

The United States has nearly 300 million people. Canada has 30 million people. There is a huge customer base in the US that allows for services to be offered a bit more cheaply than in Canada. We have a huge land area to cover with service. While 90% of the population is served, there are large stretches of less densely populated area that have service but few customers.

The fact of the matter is the numbers make our services more expesnive.

these services are hugely profitable for these companies and most of canada's population lives relatively close together. there are large areas that are fairly well populated that have very poor service or no service at all.

Great article. With only a few really options in BC, we are held hostage. Prices don't seem to vary at all through the companies. I think really, if we a had a couple a few more hard players it will go a long way to reducing the rates.

neoxphuse said,
Great article. With only a few really options in BC, we are held hostage. Prices don't seem to vary at all through the companies. I think really, if we a had a couple a few more hard players it will go a long way to reducing the rates.
In BC you're paying amongst the lowest for the best service in Canada....and you're still complaining?

(I'm talking about Internet...if you were talking about mobile phone then you're right )

I have been stuck with my telus contract for ever! (over 3 years since my phone died and I had to resign for a new one). All i want to do is get out of it! 10 more months baby 10 more months!

Have just a basic plan with unlimited text incoming and out going. total cost $50
(nothing to do with web surfing at all)

Sraf said,
Go Shaw! Best ISP ever

i used to be happy with shaw's cs and other things in calgary such as free speed upgrades and the ability to pay my bill two months at a time and let it lapse for a month or two without hassles, along with free house calls(improved from costing 20$ per house call) but from what i hear the cs has started to go downhill, especially if you bundle tv and phone with your internet.
still has to be better than telus out there though. i remember signing up with my adress and everything at a telus store and then finding out i was out of service range(well within calgary city limits) after a month and being dinged by the much advertised as being totaly free dial up service at charge of over $100 as i waited for them to hook it up. at least they waived the charge when i canceled the service when they failed to deliver what i signed up and paid for at the store.

the things i disliked about shaw was the speedburst technology which fudged speedtest results, p2p throttling and poor up speeds. things techs swore up and down that they didn't have but after digging through the site for a couple hours you could find in the small print.
and ofc if you called their cs pone line on off hours you got rerouted to india or pakistan or something that read scripts even if you walked them through what you had done to trouble shoot the issue already, and promise free time that never appeared on your bill.

treemonster said,
the things i disliked about shaw was the speedburst technology which fudged speedtest results, p2p throttling and poor up speeds. things techs swore up and down that they didn't have but after digging through the site for a couple hours you could find in the small print.
and ofc if you called their cs pone line on off hours you got rerouted to india or pakistan or something that read scripts even if you walked them through what you had done to trouble shoot the issue already, and promise free time that never appeared on your bill.

Really? Because when I was working there 3 years ago ALL the customer service was done in Canada (though they had a tendency to hire foreign people....not sure why since it does make it look like the support is from overseas when it's not)

There's a mistake in the article. Rogers doesn't control cable East of Sault Ste Marie. They control anything south of Parry Sound and anything East of North Bay (Sudbury has Eastlink, North Bay & Parry Sound have Cogeco). There's no way Rogers partnered with them either since I have unlimited bandwidth per month.

Lexcyn said,
There's a mistake in the article. Rogers doesn't control cable East of Sault Ste Marie. They control anything south of Parry Sound and anything East of North Bay (Sudbury has Eastlink, North Bay & Parry Sound have Cogeco). There's no way Rogers partnered with them either since I have unlimited bandwidth per month.

yeah i seem to have unlimited bandwidth on cogeco with no throttling on p2p type downloads and good upload speed. not entirely happy with the uptime, but i'd say it's slightly better although a fair amount more expensive than shaw was in calgary.

Lexcyn said,
There's a mistake in the article. Rogers doesn't control cable East of Sault Ste Marie. They control anything south of Parry Sound and anything East of North Bay (Sudbury has Eastlink, North Bay & Parry Sound have Cogeco). There's no way Rogers partnered with them either since I have unlimited bandwidth per month.

Funny thing is, you're 100% right. I'm in Sudbury, but apparently a dolt. Thanks for the fix.

Brian said,

Funny thing is, you're 100% right. I'm in Sudbury, but apparently a dolt. Thanks for the fix.

Cool, I didn't know anyone else from Sudbury visited Neowin.

TruckWEB said,
You forgot VIDEOTRON in Quebec. Videotron is a big cable Internet provider, TV, Digital TV, Phone and soon, mobile.

I didn't forget Videotron, or Eastlink for that matter. Although Videotron is owned by Quebecor, they're still a Rogers partner in many cases. Eastlink I didn't mention as they are quite small and localized. We also have Cogeco in Eastern Ontario and MTS in Manitoba.

TruckWEB said,
You forgot VIDEOTRON in Quebec. Videotron is a big cable Internet provider, TV, Digital TV, Phone and soon, mobile.
Don't worry....Videotron sucks just as bad as Rogers

CTRC should be dissolved as its pointless. It does NOTHING to help consumers, exept ensure monopolies are ran and outrageous rates are charged.. For example take the Bell Satellite TV fiasco that happened 6-8 months ago, where they illegally added random charges to accounts for no real reasons - CTRC had Bell's money ridden back through the whole thing...

This also falls for the local TV on Cable TV issue, where they wanted to and are able to charge more to distribute free programming.

Ruciz said,
CTRC should be dissolved as its pointless. It does NOTHING to help consumers, exept ensure monopolies are ran and outrageous rates are charged.. For example take the Bell Satellite TV fiasco that happened 6-8 months ago, where they illegally added random charges to accounts for no real reasons - CTRC had Bell's money ridden back through the whole thing...

This also falls for the local TV on Cable TV issue, where they wanted to and are able to charge more to distribute free programming.

I would love to deal some heavy blows to those guys, they haven't done anything good for Canadians since they managed to help get Cell phone service in Canada a bit more off the ground. And even then I'm not sure they did that much.

Ruciz said,
CTRC should be dissolved as its pointless. It does NOTHING to help consumers, exept ensure monopolies are ran and outrageous rates are charged..

These people are protecting business model that would not exist otherwise.

For example let take Global TV. They buy the braodcasting right to TV shows, let say Big Brother, and than they broadcast it in Canada on their stations, and replace the american commercial with canadian commercials. But to make sure people don't watch the show on CBS, they substitute the signal on CBS with the Global one. So Global doesn't contribute nothing to production content of Big Brother, and rub us of our choice to watch it on the station of our choice. THat's the CRTC that force that on Cable and Satellite distributor.

That might not be such a big deal for a show like Big Brother, but when you talk about The Superbowl, where watching the commercials is part of the whole experience, then you have an awful lot of people ****ed off, because they have to watch the same Molson or Labatt commercial 75 times.

And then they wonder why there is such a big black market for Directv.

Captain555 said,

And then they wonder why there is such a big black market for Directv.

There hasn't been since 2004... everyone moved on to FTA receivers for Dish/BEV programming

Berserk87 said,
Canadian Phone Contracts : 3 years.
Rest of the World : 2 years (with a lot of them offering the phone unlocked).

Great point, I forgot about that as it's such a standard thing that I neglected it.

Berserk87 said,
Canadian Phone Contracts : 3 years.
Rest of the World : 2 years (with a lot of them offering the phone unlocked).

Generally 12 to 18 months in the UK

Berserk87 said,
Canadian Phone Contracts : 3 years.
Rest of the World : 2 years (with a lot of them offering the phone unlocked).

Meh, depends, in New Zealand the length of the contract is proportional to the subsidy they provide; the lower the subsidy, the shorter the contract. There is also the option to purchase the phone outright and unlocked too.

DARKFiB3R said,

Generally 12 to 18 months in the UK

More like 18 to 24 months, with 24 becoming the norm.
Hardly any operators offer 12 months now, like Tesco.

rawr_boy81 said,

Meh, depends, in New Zealand the length of the contract is proportional to the subsidy they provide; the lower the subsidy, the shorter the contract. There is also the option to purchase the phone outright and unlocked too.

It actually works like that in Canada, too. At least with some of the carriers. With Rogers, for example, I can sign up for a 0, 1, 2, or 3 year contract, depending on how much of a subsidy I want to get on my new phone.

Berserk87 said,
Canadian Phone Contracts : 3 years.
Rest of the World : 2 years (with a lot of them offering the phone unlocked).

Actually, in Brazil contracts are, by regulamentation, to last at the longest 6 months and all phones are to be unlocked even if under a plan.

Berserk87 said,
Canadian Phone Contracts : 3 years.
Rest of the World : 2 years (with a lot of them offering the phone unlocked).

That just change in Quebec. The provincial government just pass a law that revoke all the contract. They realize that in Quebec, we were paying 10 to 20 % more than the rest of Canada. So they tought that cancelling all the contract would created some competition.

Captain555 said,

That just change in Quebec. The provincial government just pass a law that revoke all the contract. They realize that in Quebec, we were paying 10 to 20 % more than the rest of Canada. So they tought that cancelling all the contract would created some competition.

Do you have a link or something? I might be interested

Rudy said,
Do you have a link or something? I might be interested

I haven't look for it on the web. Heard about it on LCN and RDI, last week of June.

Rudy said,
Do you have a link or something? I might be interested

Bill 60

Here are some of the highlights:

Changes to contracts must come with 60 days' notice and the consumer has the ability to cancel the contract without penalty if the changes involve "an increase in the consumer's obligations or a reduction in the merchant's obligations"
Such changes can't affect "an essential element of the contract" like the nature of the service offered
Fixed-term service contracts can't be unilaterally cancelled by the provider
Consumers can't be required to pay penalty fees beyond simple interest charges for missed payments
Merchants are required to fully explain existing warranties before asking customers if they would like extended warranties
If you buy an item second-hand that's still under warranty, manufacturers can't require that you prove the previous owner abided by the warranty's conditions
Gift certificates and gift cards cannot have expiry dates, and must come with written explanations of how to check the balance on them. They also cannot be subject to fees
Contracts must come with various things in writing, including the total dollar value of "inducements" (like free cellphones)
Contracts cannot be automatically renewed
You can't be charged for service while the device you use to access that service (assuming it was provided with the contract) is being repaired
Consumers can unilaterally cancel contracts and pay back the value of any inducements provided at contract signing (or 10% of the remainder of the contract, or $50, depending on the circumstance)
Advertisements must include the full cost of services, less taxes (though it's hard to see how this would be enforced since cellphones, cable, Internet and other services come with different plans)
In case a company breaks any of these provisions, the government or a recognized consumer advocacy body can seek an injunction forcing the provider to comply
The bill also contains some minor provisions dealing with travel agents

http: blog.fagstein.com/2009/06/18/inside-bill-60/

ambiance said,
Well, at least the CRTC has our backs.

Are you blind &/or deaf? or was that just a really bad joke?