CRTC says regulating mobile internet would “only get in the way of innovation”

iphone_weatherA decision has been made by the CRTC about the requests by some organizations, including Pelmorex (which owns The Weather Network) to re-examine the regulations when it comes to Internet traffic management, on mobile devices.

Back in February Pelmorex made claims that the wireless carriers need to have a “transparent set of traffic management rules” when it comes to monitoring internet traffic on our mobile devices:

“Pelmorex is concerned that the Commission might adopt a definition of “net neutrality” or “traffic management” that will be too narrow and will not fully address all of the instances where a network operator might manipulate traffic to its benefit. While not currently a concern for wire-line ISPs, there are a number of commercial or business practices that are being employed by wireless network operators that limit access to their networks. Wireless networks are increasingly becoming a key access point for the Internet and the devices that are used to access that network are today’s most ubiquitous computers. These wireless networks, which are owned and operated by the same companies that dominate the wire-line market, provide customers with the ability to send and receive a variety of traffic, including voice, data and programming.”

In addition, Pelmorex wrote “We believe that the measures employed by wireless carriers to control access to their networks should be considered as a critical part of this proceeding and that the  Commission should take steps to ensure that all network operators, including wireless  carriers, are subject to the same general requirements relating to net neutrality.

However, the CRTC has looked into the matter and has concluded that after careful examination it will maintain its approach for broadcasting content distributed over the Internet and through mobile devices, stating it would stall innovation.

Konrad von Finckenstein, Q.C., Chairman of the CRTC said “While broadcasting in new media is growing in importance, we do not believe that regulatory intervention is necessary at this time. We found that the Internet and mobile services are acting in a complementary fashion to the traditional broadcasting system. Any intervention on our part would only get in the way of innovation.”

In closing von Finckenstein said the CRTC will be putting  a strategy in place to ensure Canada has a leadership position. He stated “Canada needs a comprehensive national strategy to secure its digital future. Such a strategy is essential if we want to maintain a competitive advantage in this global environment.”

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