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CRTC to decide whether to allow Bell’s takeover of Astral on Thursday; OpenMedia.ca available to comment

Decision will determine whether Bell will be given more control over Canada’s already highly-concentrated media system

WHY:
Citizens’ group OpenMedia.ca is saying that this deal is bad for Canadians as it still will lead to less media choice, innovation, and our overgrown big telecom giants getting even larger.

In recent years hundreds of thousands of Canadians have spoken out about the control big media companies like Bell have over our communications choices and pricing.

OpenMedia.ca Communications Manager Lindsey Pinto says: “Bell's plan will mean fewer media and telecom choices, higher prices, and less opportunity for free expression. Canada already has the most concentrated media market in the G8, and we'll fall even further behind if this takeover goes ahead.”

“Canadians believe it’s time to stop the regulatory coddling of Big Media and for the government to take clear action to tackle the problem of media concentration.”

WHEN:
The CRTC decision will be issued at 4:00 PM ET / 1:00 PM PT, following a media lockup from 2.30 PM – 4:00 PM ET.

WHERE:
OpenMedia.ca is based in Vancouver, BC.
The CRTC decision will be issued in Gatineau, QC.

BACKGROUND:

OpenMedia.ca is a grassroots organization that safeguards the possibilities of the open and affordable Internet. The group works towards informed and participatory digital policy.

Through campaigns such as StopTheMeter.ca and StopSpying.ca, OpenMedia.ca has engaged over half-a-million Canadians, and has influenced public policy and federal law.

The Stop the Takeover Coalition comprises public interest groups and industry players who have come together, based on a set of common principles, to oppose the proposed takeover of Astral Media by Bell and to promote public engagement through the Stop the Takeover campaign.

For more information, please contact:

David Christopher – 1.778.232.1858 – [email protected]

Details can also be found at http://openmedia.ca and http://stopthetakeover.ca.

OpenMedia works to keep the Internet open, affordable, and surveillance-free. We create community-driven campaigns to engage, educate, and empower people to safeguard the Internet.

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