The Bell family of companies has made a couple of personnel changes to its regulatory team. Effective January 1, 2007, Denis Henry, VP of regulatory law at Bell Canada, will assume the same role at Bell Aliant. He has spent about 30 years with Bell Canada, most of it in the regulatory department.
CRTC allows Yak application on billing and collection to proceed
The CRTC is going to continue consideration of a Yak Communications Canada Inc. Part VII application regarding billing and collection services. Bell Canada, Bell Aliant and SaskTel had opposed the application, noting that it raises issues that would be better dealt with in the broader proceeding addressing the wholesale access regime (Telecom Public Notice 2006-14). The commission disagreed, saying that the issues raised in Yak’s application don’t fall into PN 2006-14.
At first glance, it seems Cisco Systems Inc. has shut Canadian telcos out of its new telepresence ecosystem. The network equipment maker chose IBM Corp. – not Bell Canada, MTS Allstream Inc. or Telus Corp. – to bring its new high-definition video conferencing system to Canuck businesses. But according to industry observers, carriers do have positions to play in the telepresence game.
Ongoing public sector investment in information technology in healthcare is necessary to make the electronic health record a reality for all Canadians, and telcos will stand to gain from such investment, says the president and CEO of Montreal-based Canada Health Infoway (CHI).
Next year’s public hearing on wholesale access and essential facilities could turn in to a Battle Royale over the full deregulation of Canada’s telecommunications service market (Telecom Public Notice 2006-14). The big incumbent telephone companies will be arguing for narrower guidelines, if not their complete removal, while competitors will likely say mandatory wholesale access needs to be maintained.
The one-time promising technology of broadband over powerline (BPL), touted by some as the third wire into the home that would break the DSL-cable duopoly, appears to be all but dead in Canada. According to industry observers, three things have stopped BPL in its tracks: messy standards, sticky regulatory issues, and a questionable business case.
In October, Darren Entwhistle, CEO of Telus Corp., speaking to the Canadian Chamber of Commerce called for a "revolution" to overthrow the oversight of Telus’ regulator, the Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). It was yet another salvo by one of Canada’s telephone giants in a no-holds barred campaign against the way they are currently regulated. The gist of their complaint is that meddling CRTC despots have hamstrung the big telephone companies with unnecessary regulation.
Telefilm Canada executive director Wayne Clarkson and chairperson Charles Bélanger appeared before the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage last month as part of a review of Telefilm’s mandate and priorities. They told the commission that while rationalization and streamlining in other areas have freed up nearly $3 million for reinvesting in productions, the Telefilm Canada New Media Fund in particular needs additional investment if it’s to capitalize on the opportunities offered by emerging forms of interactive media. Below are select excerpts from Clarkson’s portion of the presentation, titled "Modernizing Telefilm in the multiplatform era."