July 17, 2009

Different services

(Published in the The Ottawa Citizen Letters, July 15, 2009)
Re: Cable Internet giants oppose new rules, July 14.

So why can't Rogers Communications and Bell Canada figure out how to offer their customers a different service level that allows the Internet service providers (ISPs) to throttle when needed? Customers would know what to expect, and service to other levels for other uses would not be harmed. VPNs (virtual private networks) would work and file transfers could be done.

The companies could learn a lesson from our provincial hydro agency. When it wanted to solve power overloads caused by too many air conditioners on summer hot days, it came up with a carrot: a free programmable thermostat in return for occasional throttling your air conditioner for two hours.

Transparency is not just something people want from their governments. They want it from the businesses they deal with too. It would really make me angry to pay for service and not get it. Unless there is proper regulation, I might never know.

Pat Drummond, Manotick