Bell Canada Attempts To Censor Canadian Internet Access Again
New information brought forward thanks for a freedom of information request shows Bell is hard at work to change the way Canadians use the internet, and not for the better.
According to a story from Wire Report editor Anna Karadeglija Bell wanted to make VPN unlawful under the NAFTA renegotiation which happened last year.
VPN's or Virtual Private Networks are a technology used by many businesses, journalists, researchers and privacy-conscious consumers as a way to mask their online activity from internet service providers like Bell. The service can also be used to fake the user's location in the world allowing the users access to geo-locked features and content like say a streaming service only available in the USA.
“Canada should seek rules in NAFTA that require each party to explicitly make it unlawful to offer a VPN service used for the purpose of circumventing copyright, to allow rightsholders to enforce this rule, and to confirm that it is a violation of copyright if a service effectively makes content widely available in territories in which it does not own the copyright due to an ineffective or insufficiently robust geo-targeting system,” the submission stated.
It's unclear just how or who would be responsible for deciding if someone was using a VPN to circumvent copyright, though I'm sure Bell would love to step up and be accountable for that.
Luckily after the NAFTA negotiations failed, and the new USMCA was put in place Bell's VPN rules were not put in place, but the company is still attempting to change the way Canadians access the internet.
Just last year Bell teamed up with other companies and cultural organizations in Canada to create 'Fair Play Canada' and organization which asked the government to institute a process for blocking access to websites deemed to be engaging in piracy.
Again this was denied by the government, but it gives us a good look at measures Bell is willing to go to stop internet users in Canada from accessing the content they want.
Also, don't be fooled by Bell attempting to spin these new rules and laws into ways of protecting users this is to better there bottom line nothing more. Bell only cares about itself and not its users. The internet as a platform shouldn't be censored by the government to protect its citizens because, in the end, those who want to get around these blocks will find a way which leaves your average user upset and restricted to the wealth of knowledge and information available on the World Wide Web.