CRTC Accepting Comments on Reddit for Upcoming Hearing

In preparation for the hearing taking place in late October on pricing practices related to Internet data plans, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has announced that it will be using a Reddit forum to gather comments related to the issue.

The Commission has stated on their website that it will post the topic of differential pricing practices related to Internet data plans plans on the /r/Canada subreddit discussion forum to encourage individuals who might not otherwise participate in this proceeding to share their points of view.

Reddit is an online discussion forum consisting of thousands of discussion communities, known as subreddits. Each subreddit generally deals with broad subject matter, and is populated by user-submitted topics.Reddit_Logo_Wide

In preparation for the hearing, the Commission is considering the following policy questions:

  • How should differential pricing practices be defined, in relation to the provision of Internet data plans over wireline and wireless networks?
  • What are the benefits and concerns about these practices, and do these concerns outweigh the benefits such that regulatory intervention is justified?
  • What regulatory measures, if any, should the Commission implement?

The questions are being asked in order to determine which differential pricing practices, if any, may not be acceptable under the Telecommunications Act.

The official /r/Canada subreddit discussion forum will run from 9 a.m. (Eastern Time) on 26 September 2016 to 8 p.m. (Eastern Time) on 30 September 2016.

To post comments or to “up”/“down” vote this topic during this period, individuals must be registered as users with Reddit (an email, a username, and a password are required to register).crtc

As per standard Reddit practices, comments from newly registered users will be private (i.e. not posted online) until they are manually approved by one of the subreddit /r/Canada moderators.

The approval turnaround time will be less than two hours between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. (Eastern Time), and seasoned users will experience no delays in posting their comments online.

For those wishing to simply read comments, no registration is required for viewing.

According to the Secretary General, following the completion of the discussion period on 30 September 2016, a transcript of the discussion from the /r/Canada subreddit page will be added to the public record of this proceeding and will be made available on the Commission’s website at www.crtc.gc.ca.

Parties to this proceeding may address comments made over the course of the online discussion during the oral phase of the public proceeding or within their final submissions, due 23 November 2016.

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