Some Canadian Wireless Carriers Not Happy with CRTC’s New Code of Conduct

Rogers, Telus, and Bell are among a group of wireless carriers in Canada that are not happy with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s new code of conduct, which was created to make the industry fairer to consumers.

Canadians pay some of the highest prices for some of the worst cellphone service in the industrialized world, which Vancouver-based OpenMedia says is “a direct result of the lack of choice where 94% of the market is dominated by just three giant Big Telecom conglomerates.”

“After vigilance by Canadians of all walks of life policy-makers are finally starting to fix our broken telecom market. The old giant telecom providers had a chance to listen but instead they’re taking Canadians to court with hopes to delay safeguards until nearly 2017,” explains OpenMedia executive director Steve Anderson.

The carriers argue that the CRTC’s code, particularly its “retrospective application,” will damage them financially and that the code may even been illegal in some respects.

“The CRTC exceeded its jurisdiction and erred in law by purporting to render the Wireless Code retrospectively applicable to contracts entered into between wireless service providers and their customers before the Wireless Code comes into force on 2 December 2013,” they argue in a notice of motion.

Anderson vehemently disagrees.

“The gross sense of entitlement of these telecom bureaucracies is out of control,” he says. “It is clearly time for serious action to rein Big Telecom and that means we need to consider separating out their infrastructure control so new entrants can provide services on a level playing field. It’s time for the government to take bold action to stand up for Canadians and our economy.”