Saturday, November 29, 2008
Friday, November 28, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Call for comments: The Commission invites parties to comment on Internet traffic management practices of ISPs, including in particular the issues described below. In their comments, parties should provide full supporting rationale and all evidence on which they rely, and structure their submissions according to the topics and questions identified below.
· A primary reason given for Internet traffic management practices is the increase in Internet traffic volumes caused by end-users.5 This has been attributed to growth in the use of certain applications, as well as growth in online video consumption, which can lead to network congestion.
a) How has Internet traffic grown in the past three years and what are the predictions for its growth in the future? What has been the impact on Canadian ISP networks?
b) How has average end-user bandwidth consumption changed in the past three years and what are the predictions for future changes in Canada?
c) How should congestion be defined in an ISP's network?
d) Are there applications or services that are more likely to cause congestion, and if so, what are they?
e) What are the relative bandwidth requirements for different types of Internet applications?
· The Commission is seeking information regarding technical and economic solutions that are available now, or likely to be available in the future, for the purpose of Internet traffic management. The Commission would also like to understand the impacts of these solutions.
a) What technologies could be employed by ISPs (for example, deep packet inspection) to manage Internet traffic?
b) What developments are under way with respect to traffic protocol (such as modifications to transmission control protocols) and/or application changes (such as changes to P2P file exchange) which could assist in addressing network congestion?
c) What are the specific capabilities offered by the technical solutions identified in (a) and (b) above? For example, would these technologies allow for throttling of individual users or groups of users; would they allow for the collection of information about persons and to what extent?
d) With reference to questions (a) to (c) above, how effective would these solutions be in addressing network congestion in the ISP networks?
e) Also with reference to questions (a) to (c) above, what impact could the implementation of technical solutions have on the Internet Engineering Tark Force standards upon which the operation of the Internet is based? Could these solutions create interoperability challenges for application developers?
f) Describe the advantages and disadvantages (including end-user impacts) of employing the following practices in order to manage Internet traffic: i. monthly bandwidth limits (bit caps), ii. excess bandwidth usage charges, iii. time of day usage pricing, iv. peak period throttling, v. end-user-based throttling, vi. application-based throttling, vii. content caching, viii. upgrading network capacity, and ix. others not listed above.
· In Telecom Decision 2008-108, the Commission directed Bell Canada to develop and file with the Commission, proposed notification requirements to address future changes that impact materially on the performance of GAS.
a) Should these requirements be extended to other ISPs providing wholesale Internet services such as the third party Internet access services offered by cable ISPs?
b) Are similar requirements necessary and appropriate in relation to the provision of retail Internet services?
c) If so, what kinds of practices, and/or changes to practices, should trigger these requirements and what information and how much notice should be provided to end-users?
· Subsection 27(2) of the Act prohibits a Canadian carrier from unjustly discriminating, subjecting any person to an undue or unreasonable disadvantage or giving an undue or unreasonable preference toward any person, including itself, in relation to the provision of a telecommunications service.
a) What, if any, Internet traffic management practices employed by ISPs would result in unjust discrimination, undue or unreasonable preference or advantage?
· Section 36 of the Act states that unless the Commission approves otherwise, a Canadian carrier shall not control the content or influence the meaning or purpose of telecommunications carried by it for the public.
a) What, if any, Internet traffic management practices employed by ISPs would result in controlling the content, or influencing the meaning or purpose of telecommunications?
b) For any Internet traffic management practice identified in (a), what criteria should the Commission apply in determining whether to authorize such practice?
· Section 47 of the Act states that the Commission shall exercise its powers and perform its duties under the Act with a view to implementing the Canadian telecommunications policy objectives set out in section 7 of the Act8 (the policy objectives) and ensuring that Canadian carriers provide telecommunications services and charge rates in accordance with section 27.
a) What issues do Internet traffic management practices raise concerning the policy objectives of the Act?
· Section 47 of the Act also states that the Commission shall exercise its powers and perform its duties under the Act in accordance with any orders made by the Governor in Council under section 8. The Governor in Council has issued an Order Issuing a Direction to the CRTC on Implementing the Canadian Telecommunications Policy Objectives, P.C. 2006-1534, 14 December 2006 (the Policy Direction), which requires the Commission to, among other things, rely on market forces to the maximum extent feasible and when relying on regulation, use measures in a manner that interferes with market forces to the minimum extent necessary to meet the policy objectives. The Policy Direction also requires the Commission to ensure that non-economic measures are implemented, to the greatest extent possible, in a symmetrical and competitively neutral manner.
a) In light of the Policy Direction, address the requirement for, and the appropriateness of, implementing any regulatory measures in relation to Internet traffic management by ISPs.
b) For each proposed regulatory measure, comment on how such measure would be consistent with the Policy Direction as well as how these measures could be implemented in the least intrusive manner.
· The issue of Internet traffic management practices is increasingly a global issue that is being raised in other jurisdictions.
a) Discuss any initiatives being examined or undertaken in other jurisdictions in relation to the issues raised in this proceeding concerning the Internet traffic management practices of ISPs.
b) With respect to any initiatives described in part (a) of this question, discuss their possible applicability in Canada.
I like the last bit!
Friday, November 21, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
"Hello, this is Senator Barack Obama and today is Thursday, June 8th, 2006.
"The topic today is net neutrality. The internet today is an open platform where the demand for websites and services dictates success. You've got barriers to entry that are low and equal for all comers. And it's because the internet is a neutral platform that I can put on this podcast and transmit it over the internet without having to go through some corporate media middleman. I can say what I want without censorship. I don't have to pay a special charge. But the big telephone and cable companies want to change the internet as we know it. They say they want to create high-speed lanes on the internet and strike exclusive contractual arrangements with internet content-providers for access to those high-speed lanes. Those of us who can't pony up the cash for these high-speed connections will be relegated to the slow lanes.
"Allowing the Bells and cable companies to act as gatekeepers with control over internet access would make the internet like cable. A producer-driven market with barriers to entry for website creators and preferential treatment for specific sites based not on merit, the number of hits, but on relationships with the corporate gatekeeper. If there were four or more competitive providers of broadband service to every home, then cable and telephone companies would not be able to create a bidding war for access to the high-speed lanes. But here's the problem. More than 99 percent of households get their broadband services from either cable or a telephone company.
"So here's my view. We can't have a situation in which the corporate duopoly dictates the future of the internet and that's why I'm supporting what is called net neutrality. In the House, the Energy and Commerce Committee and the Judiciary Committee reached different conclusions on network neutrality. Judiciary Committee members voted to protect net neutrality and commerce voted with the Bells and cable. That debate is going to hit the House floor this Friday. In the Senate, Senators Snowe and Dorgan are leading the fight for net neutrality and I've joined in that effort. Senator Inouye, the ranking Democrat of the Commerce Committee, has joined us in this effort as well and he's working with Senator Stevens to put strong network neutrality into any Senate bill that comes before us. There is widespread support among consumer groups, leading academics and the most innovative internet companies, including Google and Yahoo, in favor of net neutrality. And part of the reason for that is companies like Google and Yahoo might never have gotten started had they not been in a position to easily access the internet and do so on the same terms as the big corporate companies that were interested in making money on the internet.
"I know if you are listening to this podcast that you are going to take an intense interest in this issue as well. Congress is going to need to hear your voice because the Bell and cable companies are going to be dedicating millions of dollars to defeating network neutrality. So I'll keep you updated on this important issue and I look forward to talking to you guys again next week. Bye-bye."
Monday, November 10, 2008
Lecturer in European Union Commercial Law (University of Essex)
The School of Law wishes to appoint a Lecturer in European Union Law with a firm commitment to teaching at LLB and LLM level. The areas of greatest interest include Internal Market law, EU Company law as well as electronic communications/Internet law. We would welcome applications from candidates with the ability to teach some element of French Law.
Candidates should be able to demonstrate an excellent research profile or (in the case of applicants for whom this is a first academic appointment) strong demonstrable research potential.
The School was rated “5” in both the 1996 and 2001 Research Assessment Exercises, and its teaching has been assessed as “Excellent” by HEFCE. The School has a policy that all academics contribute in an equitable manner to its administrative load.
Salary: £36,532-£43,622 per annum; Closing date: 16 November 2008; Apply online (Ref. AC705)
Friday, November 07, 2008
Thursday, November 06, 2008
1. One more step for France in adopting the graduated response ============================================================
Despite all opposition and debates, on 30 October 2008, a crushing majority of the French Senate voted in favour of the anti-piracy law, the so called Hadopi law, introducing the graduate response against illegal content downloading.
The law enabling the introduction of three-strikes measure against file-sharers and Internet users comes now in contradiction with the European Parliament's opinion which called on the European Commission and all member states to "avoid adopting measures conflicting with civil liberties and human rights and with the principles of proportionality, effectiveness, and dissuasiveness, such as the interruption of Internet access."
Regarding the French Senate's vote, Jeremie Zimmermann, co-founder of La Quadrature du Net said: "Inconsistencies, lies, confusion and insults which the creative industries habitually use to blame their clients served as justification for a hurried vote, which ignored the wider public debate which is taking place in France and in Europe."
According to the modified law voted by the Senate, if an illegal downloading case is reported by an authorised body (industry associations, CNC, professional bodies), Hadopi, the body created especially for this purpose, will send the infringer a warning e-mail. If the infringement is repeated in 6-month time, a new e-mail is sent together with a warning by registered letter. In case in the next year the infringement is repeated, the Internet user in cause is penalised according to the gravity of the act. The sanction can be the denial of Internet access ranging from one month (duration decreased by the senators from 3 months as initially in the draft law) to a year during which time the Internet user continues to pay the access subscription and is included on a black list that forbids him
(her) to subscribe to any other operator.
Bruno Retailleau, a Senate member who voted against the legislation, argued that a full cut off of the Internet access is too severe a punishment as Internet access is essential to modern homes. In his opinion, cutting off households might even be considered discriminatory, as Internet access is usually tied to a cable line or phone service.
In case the French National Assembly (the second chamber of the Parliament) also votes in favour of the Hadopi law and the law becomes effective next year, the French government will be at odds with the European Parliament being in direct contradiction with Amendment 138 to the Telecoms Package, voted on 24 September which explicitly states that only the judicial authority can impose restrictions on citizens' fundamental rights and freedoms.
The European Parliament clearly expressed the opposition against the cutting off of Internet users' access, wishing "a balance between the interests of rights holders and those of consumers", and considering that "that big measures like cutting off Internet access shouldn't be used."
On the other hand, minister Albanel seems confident in the removal of Amendment 138 of the Telecom Package by the European Council having in view the pressure France is putting on the Commission and the Council.
Illegal downloading: the graduate response reviewed and corrected by the Senate (only in French, 1.11.2008) http://www.01net.com/editorial/394828/telechargement-illegal-la-riposte-graduee-revue-et-corrigee-par-le-senat/?rss
"Three strikes" P2P rule inches closer to law in France (2.11.2008) http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20081102-three-strikes-p2p-rule-inches-closer-to-law-in-france.html
"Graduated response" - Will France disconnect Europe? (1.11.2008) http://www.laquadrature.net/en/graduated-response-will-france-disconnect-europe
EDRi-gram: French law on 'graduate response' opposed by ISOC Europe
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
Pricing plans will range from $29.95 a month for a 5GB cap [ed: on a FIXED line!!!] and 768kbps download speeds to $54.90 for a 40GB cap at 15mbps. There's also a 10GB cap option, but that's only available alongside phone and TV service.
If customers exceed their bandwidth cap - which covers uploads as well as downloads - they'll be charged an extra $1 per extra gigabyte. "It's just a like a cell phone plan," Dudley says. And they can track their usage via a "gas gauge" on the company's web site.