After years of disappointing CRTC decisions that favoured Big Telecom’s agenda at the expense of customers’ interests, the government has finally issued a new policy direction that would order the CRTC to put people first.

Unlike the old policy direction from 2006, which called for a reliance on market forces and telco self-regulation, the new policy direction’s main focus is to “promote competition, affordability, consumer interests and innovation.”

This is our best chance to change the game and ensure that all future CRTC decisions make customers and affordability a top priority. But it’s not a done deal yet. Big Telecom hates this new idea, and is lobbying hard to stop it. If the government doesn’t get rid of the old policy that got us where we are now (with some of the most expensive internet in the world), the new plan doesn’t stand a chance.

We need to show the government just how much support there is for their new direction for the CRTC. Tell the government: It’s time to ensure the CRTC has to put people first.

Tired of paying some of the highest prices in the world? Not having enough internet and mobile providers to choose from? Being victim of Big Telecom’s aggressive and misleading sales practices? All of the above? This is our best chance to change that, for real.

The CRTC’s policy direction is the guide it uses to make all of its decisions, and regulate Big Telecom. This has the potential to fundamentally shift the way that the CRTC approaches every decision it has to make — a total game changer.

Let’s face it — Canada can’t afford to keep paying some of the highest prices in the world for internet and mobile. A new policy direction for the CRTC is one of the most efficient ways to tackle affordability, bridge the digital divide and bring Canada’s telecom market up to speed with our international counterparts.

But the government needs to hear it from you and we need as many people as possible to endorse this petition by the April 8 deadline — so speak out now!

OpenMedia works to keep the internet open, affordable, and surveillance-free. We create community-driven campaigns to engage, educate and empower people to safeguard the Internet. Follow us on Twitter @OpenMediaOrg.

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Marie Aspiazu

Marie Aspiazu is a Digital Rights Campaigner for OpenMedia, a non-profit organization that works to keep the internet open, affordable, and surveillance-free.