Back in August of 2019, the CRTC lowered the rates that big Internet service providers (ISP) like Bell and Telus can charge independent ISPs for wholesale access to their networks. This led to an initial drop in the cost of Internet for tens of thousands of people across Canada, but as soon as Big Telecom appealed the decision in the courts, and later through cabinet, some small ISPs were forced to raise prices again. This meant that the cost savings that many customers saw were stripped away due to interference from companies like Bell.
This is not the first time that Big Telecom has thrown a tantrum when their massive profits are threatened.
Right after the Trudeau Liberals were elected in 2015, Bell tried to monopolize Canada's fibre Internet infrastructure by asking the government to overturn a CRTC decision that solidified the right for smaller providers to have access to Bell’s fibre network. In response, nearly 80,000 people signed OpenMedia’s petition calling on the new government to uphold the CRTC's decision – and we won!3
This means that with enough pressure, we can stop these price hikes. The government already knows that Bell is a bully. And during last month’s election, the Liberals promised to lower Internet prices.4 Rejecting Big Telecom’s appeal is one way to show they’re truly committed to making that happen.
We cannot let Big Telecom take away the affordable Internet prices and faster services that we fought so hard for.
We’re on the verge of something huge here. With smaller Internet providers lowering their prices for customers, Big Telecom will have no choice but to do the same to stay competitive. So no matter who your Internet service provider is, this decision impacts you!
We must make sure this CRTC decision is upheld — sign the petition and spread the word!