Welcome to the CRTC’s Office of Consumer Complaints. Please be seated.
The CRTC is now doing everything in its power to prove that its phony-balony complaints system will harm – not help – consumers. As I’ll explain below, its handling of the CGO complaints (plural) against Rogers for breaking legitimate online applications (esp World of Warcraft) has become theatre of the absurd. But first, some catching up. Continue reading
“Rogers is not aware of any problems with online games.”
— Rogers’ spokeswoman Carly Suppa, September 2011
“We are not a consumer-protection agency.”
— CRTC spokesman Denis Carmel, July 2011
(A few minor edits and corrections added in this version)
Jason Koblovsky is a gamer, independent journalist and activist. He’s also the co-founder of the Canadian Gaming Organization, which at first glance seems to be little more than a Facebook page with a couple of hundred supporters.
In the last few weeks, however, Jason and his cohorts have been all over the news for their David-and-Goliath battle with Rogers Internet. Their complaint is that Rogers has been disrupting otherwise legitimate online gameplay, ostensibly in the course of managing traffic on its network – by throttling packets that might have any association with a peer-to-peer network.
In doing so Rogers may be in violation of both s.36 of the Telecommunications Act and the ITMP framework lashed together by the CRTC in 2009 (Telecom Regulatory Policy CRTC 2009-657). In case you’d forgotten, s.36 captures the age-old principle of common carrier neutrality: “Except where 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.” Good luck with that provision now that we’ve blurred the content-carriage distinction beyond all recognition. But that’s another story. Continue reading