Tag Archives: regulations

Ottawa Requests Wireless Providers to Lower PriceS

Canadian government says that it now requires cell phone companies like Rogers, Bell and Telus to lower its cell phone bill by 25% within the next 2 years or face consequences.

Innovation, Science and Industry Minister Navdeep Bains says that unlimited talk-and-text plans that offer two gigabytes, four gigabytes and six gigabytes of data need to be reduced by 25% further from their current prices.

That means that the six-gigabyte plan that is now $60 would go down to $45. The two-gigabyte plan that is now $50 should be $37.50.

If cell phones’ bills are not reduced by 25% , Bains said, that Ottawa will introduce regulation that might force carriers to open their networks to wireless re-sellers.

Ottawa will start compiling cell phones’ pricing information and publish it every quarter for the next 2 years.

“Canada is at an exciting turning point in the future of connectivity. Wireless services are no longer a luxury. They are a critical necessity—for working, for learning at school and for engaging in modern society. We heard Canadians when they asked for more affordable options for their wireless services, and we have delivered.

Canadians shouldn’t have to choose between having a cellphone or heating their home. These new tools build on a number of initiatives we already set in place to help lower prices, improve access and ensure affordable, high-quality wireless services in every corner of our country.

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Navdeep Bains

Innovation, Science and Industry Minister

Bell Canada spokesperson Marc Choma said that right now is the worst time to regulate the industry as they are spending millions of dollars to roll out much needed 5G across the country and will put jobs and innovation at risk.

Ride Sharing Drivers in Toronto Now Must pass A City Training

City of Toronto is now requiring drivers to pass a city mandated training to be eligible to work for companies such as Uber and Lyft in the City of Toronto.

The new updated bylaw governing all Toronto ‘vehicles for hire’ now is in effect this Wednesday January 3rd.

Few things are changing:

  • The minimum number of years of required driving experience will now increase from 1 year to 3 years;
  • training program must be passed covering such topics as transporting passengers in a safe manner, driving in an urban setting, providing accessible service, anti-racism, diversity and sensitivity;
  • all ride sharing drivers will now be required to attach “Watch for Bikes” on their windows to alert passengers when exiting;
  • must alert passengers if they are being recorded.

If you are a new driver you have to pass the training by June 2020, if you are an existing driver you have until end of 2020 to complete it.

Also a handheld devices such as cell phones will now need to be securely secured and mounted in the vehicles.

There will be also a new program called “Accessibility Fund Program” which will charge a fee for not providing a wheel chair accessible transportation, all the fees collected will go to fund special wheel chair accessible transportation.

Canadian Govt Eyes Regulating Facebook, Other Tech

The Canadian government said it might start regulating social media and other tech companies like Facebook, Google, Amazon and Twitter in Canada soon.

Minister of Democratic Institutions, Karina Gould, mentioned that she thinks that Canadians are fed up with tech giants and want the government to do something about it.

Gould’s announcement is coincided with many other countries attempts at cracking down on social media.

Recently countries like UK and Australia passed a very stringent laws against social medias. Most of these laws cover how the social media should handle “online harms” and how expeditiously they suppose to take it down. In Australia for example if content is not removed fast enough, Facebook execs could face jail time.

Taylor Owen, an associate professor at McGill, in his interview with The Toronto Star, mentioned that government has to tread carefully as te government starts to introduce new restrictive laws.

“We better get the democratic governance right if we have any hope of pushing back against the autocratic model.”

Taylor Owen, an associate professor at McGill

Mark Zuckerberg is founder and chief executive of Facebook, agrees with the notion in his op-ed in Wall Street Journal.

I believe we need a more active role for governments and regulators. By updating the rules for the Internet, we can preserve what’s best about it — the freedom for people to express themselves and for entrepreneurs to build new things — while also protecting society from broader harms.

From what I’ve learned, I believe we need new regulation in four areas: harmful content, election integrity, privacy and data portability.

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and chief executive, Facebook

Spokesman for Google said no matter what they will continue working with the government to “protect Canada’s democratic institutions and election activities.”

Toronto follows Vancouver in Passing Strict Airbnb Rules

Toronto City Council has approved new rules aimed at preserving long term rentals in the city. The new rules in Toronto are similar to the recent ones passed in Vancouver. 

It will now be illegal to rent out your basement or secondary space in your primary residence. You can still rent out primary residence as before.

Alex Dagg  spokeswoman for Airbnb Canada said the company could live with the new rules.

“What’s most important here is this is truly a big step forward for the City of Toronto, in terms of really recognizing and regulating home sharing for the very first time.”

Nearly 100 Toronto leaders in tech, real estate and local business signed an open letter to Toronto Mayor JohnTory and Toronto Council in support of fair regulations for home sharing few days before the vote took place.

Dear Mayor Tory and Members of Toronto City Council,

The growth of Airbnb and home sharing reflects Toronto’s continuing evolution into a global hub for the economy of the future. Entrepreneurs and innovators from around the world are drawn to our world-class city for its diversity, its quality of life, and its openness to embracing the next generation of ideas. Toronto is the place where large and small ideas alike are being transformed into the next big thing.

The new economy is challenging old ways of doing things. Toronto must maintain its reputation as a global centre of innovation by embracing new ideas. We encourage Toronto City Council to support fair, straightforward and equitable rules that allow all Torontonians to share the home where they live – whether they are an owner or a tenant, and whether they are sharing a room, their entire home, or a secondary suite.

ArtisticOperations / Pixabay

The following rules will kick in July 1st the same day as the weed legalization across Canada:

  • Secondary residences withing primary residences would not be allowed on AirBnb even if they have their own entrances / kitchens / bathrooms unless it is rented to a tenant and he is renting it out by him or herself. What is stopping you from renting it to your uncle or a friend and then renting it through them? There might be some loop holes that need to be worked out.
  • Airbnb host would need to register with the city for $50 and keep records of their billings.
  • Airbnb host can rent out his or her entire home but only for less than half a year.
  • Airbnb itself would need to cough up $5k fee for a licence and a $1-a-night tax for each booking.
  • Airbnb would also need to make sure each listing has a City Registration.
  • Airbnb has also agreed to work with the city to reduce the noise nuisances in the neighborhoods.

Canadian Cell Phone Companies Can No Longer Lock Your Phone

As of December 1st, 2017, Government of Canada and specifically CRTC, has requested that all telco companies in Canada can no longer lock your phone or ask you to pay to unlock it.

They have also requested that all wireless contracts are readable to make sure you avoid unpleasant surprise when your bill comes.

JESHOOTS / Pixabay

All phones sold in Canada as of December 1st will be unlocked and you can use them with any provider you chose.

Also now if you have a family plan, you as plan administrator will be the only person, who can authorize how much data your kids can use.

Lastly, all contracts must be in simple language without any small print that can get you for thousands of dollars. You will be given a permanent copy, it will tell you how much exactly it is by the month, and potential optional charges and how much more you would need to pay.

Finally, we are catching up to the rest of the world. PlanetWeb loves this new regulation. Thanks!