THANK YOU, Paov!

OpenMedia r1

Dear Paov,

As we gear up to take on new battles to protect the Internet in 2019, we are also reminiscing on all the amazing work the OpenMedia community did throughout 2018 and we’d like... to share some of the highlights and victories you have taken part in.

After all, it was people like you who made all of this possible through your online actions, messages to key decision-makers, participation in government consultations, and generous donations to OpenMedia to help fuel our work. So we want to say THANK YOU, Paov!

Here are just a few of our biggest achievements in 2018, across our three pillars of the open Internet: Access, privacy and freedom of expression.

Access

  • Over 70,000 submissions were sent to the CRTC through DontCensor.ca in opposition to FairPlay Canada, an overreaching website blocking scheme led by Bell. If implemented, the plan would give Bell and a handful of other corporations the power to blacklist websites across Canada without court oversight.1
  • Following a huge outcry from the public, the CRTC listened to people in Canada and rejected Bell’s website blocking proposal, kicking the decision to the Copyright Act and Broadcast and Telecommunications Act reviews.2
  • Finally, after years of endless horror stories, Big Telecom’s bad sales practices were put under the spotlight with a CRTC investigation.3 Over 1,100 OpenMedia community members submitted their personal stories as part of this investigation.4

Privacy

  • Over 4,500 messages have been sent to Canadian Senators asking for Bill C-59 to be amended to stop CSIS from being granted overreaching offensive and defensive cyber powers.5
  • OpenMedia presented to the Procedure and House Affairs Committee (PROC), asking that Bill C-76 be reformed, to make political parties subject to privacy laws.6 On top of that, nearly 9,000 people sent messages to their MPs and Senators asking for this amendment.
  • Over 7,000 people in Canada messaged their MPs to ask for the Privacy Act to be reformed in light of Statistics Canada’s proposal to gain access to our most intimate and personal financial data without our knowledge or consent.7 Hundreds more have filed Personal Information Requests to find out if their information has already been accessed. In light of this pressure, Statistics Canada recently announced they’re putting their new data collection proposal on hold.8

Freedom of Expression

  • Over 29,000 people spoke from across North America spoke out against the USMCA’s threats to digital rights.9 We also delivered over 55,000 voices directly to Minister Freeland’s office back in February when it became clear that our digital rights were at stake as NAFTA renegotiations began heating up.10
  • Over 4,400 OpenMedia community members submitted their views on the Copyright Act via our tool at Let’sTalkCopyright.ca to make sure our future copyright laws help creators, and support an open Internet that isn’t censored by legacy corporations.11
  • OpenMedia was invited to testify in person before the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology (INDU) in October as part of the review of the Copyright Act.12 You can be assured we brought your key comments and concerns straight to the key decision makers on the committee.13

If you’d like to learn more about everything we accomplished together in 2018, please check out our 2018 year in review blog.

We would also like to give a special shout out to everyone who contributed to our December 2018 year-end fundraising drive. Your generous donations helped us meet our goal and will help power our work to keep the Internet open, affordable and surveillance free in 2019!

Speaking of 2019 — we already achieved a major milestone for OpenMedia: we contributed a detailed submission to the Broadcast and Telecommunications Legislative review that highlights our community’s concerns and recommendations for the future of Canada’s Internet.

This review will shape the laws that govern all of our communications systems for years to come, covering everything from Net Neutrality to wireline and wireless Internet affordability.

Close to 10,000 of you signed our petition supporting our submission to the review panel, which envisions an open, affordable and innovative future for the Internet in Canada. You can check out our full submission here.

With the Broadcast and Telecommunications Act review in full swing, we know Big Telecom and Big Media will fight tooth and nail to gain greater control over the Internet and charge us even more for their services. We can also expect old fights like the Internet tax and Net Neutrality to rear up their head again this year. So we cannot afford to let our guard down.

But our victories in 2018 also serve as an important reminder that together we can accomplish a lot, and defeat even the most powerful forces.

Thank you for being part of our amazing pro-Internet community!

Laura,
On behalf of OpenMedia

P.S: If you haven’t had a chance to chip in yet, please consider making a donation to OpenMedia today to help fuel our pro-Internet work in 2019. Every bit counts!

Footnotes

[1,2] Huge win for Canadians as CRTC rejects Bell’s website blocking proposal: OpenMedia
[3] Ottawa orders CRTC to investigate reports of 'aggressive' telecom sales practices: CBC
[4] Stop Big Telecom’s Bad Sales Practices: OpenMedia
[5] Senators: Stop dangerous new spy powers in Bill C-59: OpenMedia
[6] OpenMedia's testimony before PROC committee on Bill C-76: Soundcloud
[7] Stop Statistics Canada’s privacy violations: OpenMedia
[8] Statistics Canada suspends credit searches, delays plan to obtain banking records: The Globe and Mail
[9] NAFTA: Don’t trade away our digital rights: OpenMedia
[10] Over 55,000 voices are on their way to Minister Freeland’s office: OpenMedia
[11] Let’s Talk Copyright: OpenMedia
[12] We've Been Invited to Testify on Copyright: Let’s Bring Your Voices Straight to the Government!: OpenMedia
[13] Meeting No. 134 INDU - Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology: ParlVU

OpenMedia

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