By Shea Sinnott
March 15, 2011
Where's Canada's Al Franken?
U.S. Senator Al Franken has long been a devout and passionate advocate of Net Neutrality. In the last year alone, Franken has at once denounced “corporate control of the flow of information” in the U.S., warned that big corporations aim to destroy everything we love about the Internet, and called Net Neutrality “the most important free speech issue of our time.” His unwavering commitment to the principles of Net Neutrality has served to further galvanize pro-Internet activists in the U.S. – especially amidst recent threats to the U.S. Internet system (e.g. AT&T and its recently announced plans to impose usage based billing).
So, where’s Canada’s Al Franken?
Despite the fact that all the major political parties in Canada support Net Neutrality (albeit, for the most part casually and without specific policy and/or regulatory commitments), and despite the fact that we have some of the strongest Net Neutrality legislation worldwide, Canadian Big Telecom continues to gouge its customers and engage in shady “traffic management practices,” with little or no response from the body that’s supposed to protect citizens. We pay the highest Internet prices for the slowest Internet speeds (that is, the most for the least and worst) of all developed nations in the world.
Again, we need an Internet hero. And while Franken espouses the principles of Net Neutrality and emphasizes the importance of keeping the Internet free and open in the U.S., Canadians are, once again, left to take the matter into their own hands.
Watch a recent interview with Senator Al Franken at http://techcrunch.com