Canada’s telecom regulator has ruled that all data delivered online be treated equally by internet service providers.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) ruled on April 18th that Quebecor Inc’s (QBRb.TO) Videotron cannot practise zero-rating, whereby the company offers its wireless customers unlimited music streaming from Spotify, Google Music and others without it counting against its data allowances.
In a move that is seen as a win for net neutrality advocates, the nation’s telecom regulator has taken a strong stance in favour of net neutrality by making an example of Videotron. Though the CRTC has not issued a blanket ban, the government body has declared that it will rule on such issues on a case-by-case basis.
In a report by the Reuters, Laura Tribe, the executive director of consumer advocacy group OpenMedia said, “On a technicality, it leaves some wiggle room for some really creative attempts at zero-rating that can be challenged after the fact,”
“This is a really strong step for Canada in terms of being a global leader in net neutrality,” she added.
The ruling that covers both fixed-line and wireless internet comes during a time of ongoing global debate regarding net neutrality and hopefully will prove to be a guiding light for the US and other nations.
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