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Canadian Consumers Need More Net Neutrality

(OTTAWA)— The Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) today called for more consideration of consumer rights to “net neutrality” in a report entitled “Staying Neutral: Canadian Consumers and the Fight for Net Neutrality.”

PIAC’s report called on federal legislators and policymakers to protect consumers’ rights to “use their Internet connection to access the lawful content, applications or services of their choice without discrimination, modification, interruption, or delay of their internet transmissions by any party, subject to law”, among others.
PIAC counsel and report co-author John Lawford noted that consumers in focus groups appeared unaware of the definition of “net neutrality” but had strong and clear views on throttling of their traffic by Internet service providers such Bell Canada, Rogers and other Internet service providers.

“Canadians are frustrated by interference with their Internet connections and want their rights protected,” said Lawford. “It’s not clear to them that the Internet is neutral enough in Canada.”
The report recommends that in addition to helping consumers complain about Internet slowdowns, the federal government set minimum speed standards for broadband providers.
PIAC’s report is based on six focus groups conducted by Environics Research Group with Canadian Internet users in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal in January 2009.

The full report –– Staying Neutral: Canadian Consumers and the Fight for Net Neutrality–– is available for download at: Staying Neutral: Canadian Consumers and the Fight for Net Neutrality

Executive Summary [pdf file: 0.02mb]
Sommaire [pdf file: 0.04mb]

PIAC received funding from Industry Canada’s Contributions Program for Non-Profit Consumer and Voluntary Organizations. The views expressed in the report are not necessarily those of Industry Canada or the Government of Canada.

For more information, please contact:
John Lawford
Counsel
Public Interest Advocacy Centre
ONE Nicholas Street, Suite 1204
Ottawa, ON K1N 7B7
(613) 562-4002×25 (Tel)
(613) 562- 0007 (Fax)
lawford@piac.ca

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