The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports.  The demise of the Canadian Cable Telecommunications Association (CCTA) leaves a major void in the public debate over government telecom policy, and this comes only several months after the association changed its name to reflect the increasing telecom focus of its members. It could use its collective clout to put forth strong positions on a number of issues affecting the industry, including calling on the federal government to lift foreign ownership restrictions on telecommunications services firms. We will never know for sure whether this clout actually influenced CRTC decisions, but the organization put forward strong and persuasive arguments at a number of regulatory hearings. It became increasingly clear in the recent past, though, that the CCTA was having difficulty in keeping the peace among its members. This came to a head late last year when Shaw Communications pulled out of the association, citing difficulty in coming to a consensus on key issues.  It’s too bad that the CCTA couldn’t find a way to continue to operate, because there will now be a lack of a collective voice for those opposing the incumbent telephone companies on important policy matters. Sure, the big five – Rogers Communications, Vidéotron ltée, Shaw Communications, Cogeco Cable and EastLink – will continue to defend themselves vigorously in the CRTC and other public policy fora, but a fragmented voice may not work as effectively against the co-ordinated former incumbent telephone companies.  The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association found a way to convince its big members that it was still relevant when it went through some turmoil a number of years ago.  It’s unfortunate that Canada’s big five cablecos couldn’t find the same rationale for their lobbying voice.