dslreports logo
site
spacer

spacer
 
   
spc
story category
CRTC Realizes UBB About Limited Competition, Not Congestion
Though it Remains Unclear if They'll Do Anything About it
by Karl Bode 12:37PM Tuesday Jul 19 2011
Users in our Canadian broadband forums continue to track Canadian regulatory hearings on the industry's effort to impose usage-based billing on independent ISPs and consumers. As Canadian law professor Michael Geist notes over at his blog, one of the recurring themes of the hearing is the increasingly obvious fact that a lack of competition -- not congestion -- is what's driving this push by incumbent Canadian ISPs like Bell.

Click for full size
What's interesting is that despite this being fairly obvious to anybody who has been watching this multi-year drama unfold, the CRTC appears to only just be realizing incumbents everywhere have been using supposed landline network congestion (fear the Exaflood!) as a bogeyman to justify anti-competitive behavior:
quote:
While the arguments about network congestion from dominant providers such as Bell remained much the same, as the week wore on it appeared the commission was beginning to realize that congestion claims may be overstated and being used to mask fears of competition from the independent ISPs (the rebuttal phase of the hearing runs on Monday and Tuesday). Bell argued that it faces serious network congestion issues and therefore needs regulatory rules that would require independent providers to pay by volume (ie. the amount of data consumed). This represents a modest shift away from its earlier usage based billing proposal, but still rests on shaky ground.
Granted realizing that this is really about using a lack of competition to jack up prices while working to kill of remaining competition is one thing -- while the CRTC acting to do something about it is something else entirely. Still, there appears to be some progress from the February CRTC hearing, when CRTC boss Konrad von Finckenstein acted shocked and offended when forced to actually understand and think about the UBB data talking points provided to him by Bell. This time around, he's showing something vaguely resembling skepticism of Bell talking points.

view:
topics flat nest 
gruntlord6

join:2010-06-10
Barrie, ON

Big Step

This is actually pretty huge, before this mumblehurtz had no idea bell was full of shit and acted like a puppet.
MaynardKrebs
Heave Steve, for the good of the country
Premium
join:2009-06-17
kudos:4

Re: Big Step

I think I'm going to bring out a line of CRTC bobblehead dolls. They're completely fungible with the real people at hearings.
I'd expect no change in the outcome of the hearings as a result.

El Quintron
Resident Mouth Breather
Premium
join:2008-04-28
Etobicoke, ON
kudos:4
Reviews:
·TekSavvy Cable
·TekSavvy DSL

Re: Big Step

said by MaynardKrebs:

I think I'm going to bring out a line of CRTC bobblehead dolls. They're completely fungible with the real people at hearings.
I'd expect no change in the outcome of the hearings as a result.

FWIW it appears as though these hearing are going slightly better than others that came before it.

At least we're coming off as better educated and our side is definitely the more coherent of the two.
--
I'm watching District 9 again, and I've come to realize something: Wikus's got it all wrong. If I were morphing into a 9 foot tall hyper-dextrous alien that can shoot lightning bolts and get high off cat food why would I ever want to become human again?
mumumu

join:2008-12-06
Toronto, ON
I think they knew exactly what they were doing and now that what they were doing looks bad they are saying: "Well we didn't know it was going to hurt competition". They aren't a puppet.

XoX

join:2003-08-19
Qc, Canada

Did some one got a brain transplant?

Wait... Did some of them received a partial brain transplant? Please who ever started the procedure please finished it... Maybe once it's finished they will stop accepting all the crap Bell (including the crap coming from Rogers and Videotron)is saying and listening to reason...
ISurfTooMuch

join:2007-04-23
Tuscaloosa, AL

I guess...

...the checks haven't arrived yet. Don't worry guys, it's all due to the recent postal strike. They're in the mail and will reach Ottawa soon.
rradina

join:2000-08-08
Chesterfield, MO

1 recommendation

Do they claim fiber backbones are congested?

The cost to solve that problem should be relatively low compared to replacing copper with fiber. The claimed costs just don't seem to be congruent with the bandwidth Armageddon impression they are painting.

Granted, improving backbone capacity isn't free but I just feel like I'm getting a version of the truth. I still cannot help but feel that historically successful corporations are in a panic because they might be relegated to managing a dumb pipe.

The incumbents seem like very successful and experienced farmers who own and operate plantations at the beginning of a great river. Their land has average growing seasons with regular precipitation. They enjoy a steady market for their grain and livestock. Over the years they innovate and create irrigation systems that serve to enhance their market position.

One morning a routine order for grain is cancelled. Further investigation leads the farmer to discover that competition has surfaced far downstream. Someone has applied their irrigation techniques to desert land and converted it into a highly productive resource. This land also enjoys a year-round growing season that more than offsets the irrigation costs. Suddenly the upstream farmers fear being forced out of business. They band together and decide to damn the river and impose a fee on the downstream farmers to equalize competition while they start purchasing downstream land so they too can enjoy a year-round growing season. Over the years they successfully move their operations to the desert. They are now able to eliminate their competition because their operations do not have to pay the water fees since they still own the water.

NoLuckChuck

@teksavvy.com

Re: Do they claim fiber backbones are congested?

None of that applies to bell. Their congestion claims is a sick joke that Canadians are tired of hearing. Simply goggle Bell internet go to their home page and be floored by the absurd monthly caps limit.
rebus9

join:2002-03-26
Tampa Bay
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
·Bright House
said by rradina:

I still cannot help but feel that historically successful corporations are in a panic because they might be relegated to managing a dumb pipe.

That is exactly what they fear.

Dumb pipes are nothing more than a commodity, have no influence, and have to compete on the most basic of levels. Dumb pipes are the digital equivalent of faceless worker drones; expendable and easily replaceable.

Turning Bell, et al, into dumb pipes strips them of their influence over the telecom industry, legislation at local, provincial, and national levels, and their ability to move markets, shape policy, promote (or suffocate) innovation, and influence the very behavior of its customers.

Noah Vail
Son made my Avatar
Premium
join:2004-12-10
Lorton, VA
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Bright House

Corporations + Government = !Us

If Content Driven ISPs are able to narrowly define our Internet Experience,
then Governments might not have to sort through our personal information - quite so closely.

Looking at the flows of money and power,
one realizes that there's little motivation for an citizen-centric Internet.

Any blip to the contrary is just that.
Long term trends will continue to favor a loss of liberty.

Since we prefer marketing to decide our elected officials, we should be content with the above.
In the end, we always get what we choose.

NV
--
Intentions guided by Animosity, are Empowered through Deceit.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY

once you go greedy

there's no going back
unless of course Candians decide to get violent about it..

itwillcome

@telus.net

Re: once you go greedy

said by tmc8080:

there's no going back
unless of course Candians decide to get violent about it..

using the stanley cup game 7 riot as an example.... people are ticked off against being oppressed by corporations and the police and those republicans that got voted in in the last canadian federal election(and will start illegally monitoring our internet communications in about 5 weeks, without justifiable cause). lots of non-criminals went loco too(not just people who had a plan to smashy smashy) at the game 7, no matter what the propaganda spewing police wanted people to believe otherwise. psychological examinations of the events show people are frustrated and given the chance, will vent their frustration. people need to focus their frustration against those that cause the frustration.

paging anonymous. paging anonymous. canada needs you to expose the corruption. targets are the usual, bell, rogers, shaw, and just about every politician in federal or provincial power(british columbia has 15 years of liberal party tyranny). there are some nice politicians that care about the people, so go easy on them, as their files will show.

FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

1 recommendation

Re: once you go greedy

said by itwillcome :


using the stanley cup game 7 riot as an example....
people are ticked off against being oppressed by corporations and the police and those republicans that got voted in in the last canadian federal election. lots of non-criminals went loco too(not just people who had a plan to smashy smashy) at the game 7

A bunch of drunken losers whose egos are tied up with whether a hockey team wins or not is not an example of anything - except maybe beer fueled juvenile delinquents.
--
Record your speedtest.net results in DSLReports SpeedWave
»www.speedtest.net/wave/afe201cb84d45c88
gorehound

join:2009-06-19
Portland, ME
or for that fact americans who are pissed.

I_H8_Spam

join:2004-03-10
St Catharines, ON

Re: once you go greedy

I would love Bell to try this stunt in the USA. Between the State Attn Gen, US Attn Gen various comsumer groups, ect.. there would be a fire sale on the remaining assets.

Functional seperation should be the Canadian Consumers target.
imaddicted2u

join:2008-03-20

International Broadband prices

It is high time that the CRTC addresses not only issues around wholesale telecom pricing but retail rates as well. The application of "Market Forces" as a regulatory tool has been an obvious failure. The incumbent telecom providers were left to "self regulate" retail pricing. The net result has been some of the highest telecom pricing in the world. I visited the websites of the providers listed below and calculated the Canadian prices. These prices DO NOT compare favorably with those charged in Canada as stated by the CRTC. The same trend is exhibited on wireless and TV services:
UK, Orange, 20Mbps , Unlimited, $23.48 CAD. »shop.orange.co.uk/broadband/
France, Orange, 8Mbps, Unlimited, 28.42 CAD. »www.microsofttranslator.com/BV.a···net.aspx
France, SFR, 20Mbps, Unlimited, 21.68 CAD. »www.microsofttranslator.com/BV.a···dsl_adsl
Romania, Adnet telecom, 10Mbps, Unlimited, 29.13 CAD. »adnettelecom.ro/en/
Italy, Libero, 7 MMbps, unlimited, 26.99 CAD. »internet.libero.it/adsl/casa/index.phtml?
Japan, OCN, 12Mbs, Unlimited, 25.22 CAD. »www.ocn.ne.jp/english/adsl/adslset/charges/
Russia, AKADO-Stolitsa JSC), 20Mbps, Unlimited, 25.00 CAD. »www.akado.ru/
Netherlands, Online, 4Mbps, Unlimited, $24,04 CAD. »www.online.nl/
Netherlands, Online, 20Mbps, Unlimited, $30.88 CAD. »www.online.nl/
Netherlands, KPN, 8Mbps, Unlimited, $34.33 CAD. www.mxstream.nl
Netherlands, XS4ALL, 8Mbps, Unlimited, $41.13 CAD. »www.xs4all.nl/
Romania 50 Mbps, Unlimited, $9.56 100 Mbps, Unlimited, $12.86 (incl. VAT) CAD »www.rcs-rds.ro/internet-digi-net···/pachete
Internet, TV and phone services:
UK 30Mbs unlimited #internet, TV, phone cost $60.54CAD »is.gd/o1gV4n
Latvia TV, phone, 200Mbs unlimited #internet $59.31CAD Tax inc. »is.gd/7fDOzC

NoLuckChuck

@teksavvy.com

Bell is worst than "the boy that cried wolf"

It's simply unbelievable when a company offers a service with one of the lowest if not the lowest download caps in the world claims congestion. Bell's caps are so low at best browsing the internet and reading email is taking a big chance on overuse fees.

I_H8_Spam

join:2004-03-10
St Catharines, ON
Reviews:
·Start Communicat..

Re: Bell is worst than "the boy that cried wolf"

said by NoLuckChuck :

It's simply unbelievable when a company offers a service with one of the lowest if not the lowest download caps in the world claims congestion. Bell's caps are so low at best browsing the internet and reading email is taking a big chance on overuse fees.

On the lowest tier, simply maintaining windows 7's, AV database updates, itunes, flash, adobe.. poof over cap.

coldmoon
Premium
join:2002-02-04
Broadway, NC
Reviews:
·Windstream

Re: Bell is worst than "the boy that cried wolf"

said by I_H8_Spam:

said by NoLuckChuck :

It's simply unbelievable when a company offers a service with one of the lowest if not the lowest download caps in the world claims congestion. Bell's caps are so low at best browsing the internet and reading email is taking a big chance on overuse fees.

On the lowest tier, simply maintaining windows 7's, AV database updates, itunes, flash, adobe.. poof over cap.

Interesting POV and one that should be explored if true. If you are facing potential overages for simple security updates and upgrades, then you have an interesting angle to go after the ISPs who would then be working to reduce overall security as users could stop or significantly curtail updating/upgrading of their security solutions.

This is a valid argument I think and one the CRTC should think carefully about where unintended consequences come into play.

We all know how vigilant most average users are about keeping updated and what is happening here with UBB gives me a great deal of concern regarding the safety of the 'net in general. At the very least, the ISPs should remove security, OS, and product updates from their caps period.

JMHO
--
Returnil - 21st Century body armor for your PC

I_H8_Spam

join:2004-03-10
St Catharines, ON
Reviews:
·Start Communicat..

Re: Bell is worst than "the boy that cried wolf"

said by coldmoon:

Interesting POV and one that should be explored if true. If you are facing potential overages for simple security updates and upgrades, then you have an interesting angle to go after the ISPs who would then be working to reduce overall security as users could stop or significantly curtail updating/upgrading of their security solutions.

This is a valid argument I think and one the CRTC should think carefully about where unintended consequences come into play.

Bell/Rogers lowest tiers, 2gb data xfer per month + $5.00 per rounded GB over. Marketed at the light users.

Now something extra.. Bell bundles a wireless router/modem with all accounts.. the default setup is WEP 128

elwoodblues
Elwood Blues
Premium
join:2006-08-30
Somewhere in
kudos:2
Reviews:
·VMedia

Re: Bell is worst than "the boy that cried wolf"

said by NoLuckChuck :

It's simply unbelievable when a company offers a service with one of the lowest if not the lowest download caps in the world claims congestion. Bell's caps are so low at best browsing the internet and reading email is taking a big chance on overuse fees.

Oh but it's not their customers it's the IISP's customers that are causing the problem.
--
All Hail Harper, the Wannabe King of Canada
elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA

"Increasingly obvious fact" ?

Where do you get this stuff?