Weekly News Roundup (June 23)

By: Brittany Green

Top Stories this Week

 Ottawa appoints Judith LaRocque as interim chair of CRTC ; A career public servant, LaRocque will step in for Jean-Pierre Blais, whose five-year term ended on Saturday (CRTC)

Ms. LaRocque will step in for Jean-Pierre Blais, whose five-year term as chairman of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission ended on Saturday. The federal Department of Canadian Heritage, which is responsible for naming the CRTC chair, began its search for a candidate in January and extended the deadline for applications twice, but still has not found a permanent replacement.

How Blais shook up telecom industry (CRTC)

Industry players may clash over the success of his policies and his leadership, but no one could accuse Jean-Pierre Blais of anything but a dogged pursuit of his agenda during his five years as chairman of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.

Liberal government tables bill to reform Access to Information (Access to Information Canada)

The Trudeau government plans to cap the spring sitting of Parliament with long-awaited legislation on Access to Information and national security — bills unlikely to be debated by MPs in a serious way until the fall.

CBC ordered probe into nepotism complaints (Access to Information Canada)

The CBC hired an external investigator to probe two top television executives after receiving complaints that at least 13 contracts were handed to production companies owned by their spouses. Although the investigator found no breaches of the public broadcaster’s conflict of interest policy, the legal counsel for one anonymous complainant said the findings are “inconsistent with the facts” and the contracts present the appearance of conflict of interest.

Canadian media have continued to uphold whiteness at work (CRTC) (Access to Information Canada)

Editorial: The institutional refusal by Canada’s media companies (with some exceptions) to deal with diversity, and its pesky twin, equity, in a transparent and accountable way is concerning. As journalists, we flock to cover gender-equal cabinets and to criticize “diversity is our strength” while rarely mentioning our own failures on race and gender. On matters of identity, representation and equity, we are hypocrites.

Top International News

Supreme Court Rejects Expansion of Government-Speech Doctrine In Tam Case (Freedom of Expression)

The Supreme Court’s unanimous decision in Matal v. Tam striking down the trademark non-disparagement requirement as unconstitutional is a big victory for the First Amendment. First, the Court strongly pushed back against the expansion of the government-speech doctrine, perhaps the biggest current threat to free speech jurisprudence. Second, the Court strengthened a position EFF has long advocated—that intellectual property rights and First Amendment rights must be balanced against each other rather than weighted in favor of the former.

On the mark: The Supreme Court says offensive trademarks are protected speech (Freedom of Expression)

“HATE speech”, activists on college campuses like to say, “is not free speech”. Ted Wheeler, the mayor of Portland, Oregon, made the point last month in reference to a man who uttered anti-Muslim slurs before killing two people who challenged him.

Reload: Another debate about net neutrality in America

An Attack on Net Neutrality Is an Attack on Free Speech (Freedom of Expression International)

Several US senators spoke out this week on the importance of net neutrality to innovation and free speech. They are right. The Internet has become our public square, our newspaper, our megaphone. The Federal Communications Commission is trying to turn it in something more akin to commercial cable TV, and we all have to work together to stop it.

Coal company sues HBO’s John Oliver for defamation (Defamation International)

Coal company Murray Energy has sued HBO and its Sunday-night host, John Oliver, for what it says was a “false and malicious broadcast” last Sunday evening. It’s seeking financial damages and a court order barring rebroadcasts of the segment’s “defamatory statements.”

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Weekly News Roundup (June 15)

By: Brittany Green

 Top Stories this Week

 Canada envoy to U.S. embarrassed by delays in Parliament over preclearance bill (Privacy Canada)

Canada’s envoy to the United States says he is embarrassed it is taking so long for Parliament to pass a new law that would pave the way for greater pre-clearance at the border. Ambassador David MacNaughton says he leaned on U.S. lawmakers to pass a law that would allow passengers to be pre-cleared at a greater number of airports to allow the speedy flow of people across the 49th parallel.

Ottawa’s push to address competition in our wireless market is long overdue; Last week, Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains addressed the weak competitive landscape of wireless services that form the backbone of modern communications and commerce (CRTC)

If the first step toward solving an issue comes from admitting there is a problem, Canada took a big leap forward last week in addressing the weak competitive landscape of wireless services that form the backbone of modern communications and commerce. Navdeep Bains, the Minister of Innovation, Science, and Economic Development, used a keynote speech to the telecom industry to kick-start government action and remove any doubt about its frustration with the competitive state of the sector.

BoC urges banks to co-operate on cybersecurity (Access to Information Canada) Canada’s interconnected banks are vulnerable to a cascading series of cyberattacks that could undermine broad confidence in the financial system, the Bank of Canada warns.The structural vulnerability could allow for the easy spread of an initial attack that ripples into other sectors such as energy or water systems, says the bank’s June financial review.

CRTC will ‘need to act’ to boost wireless competition, Blais says; Outgoing head of Canada’s telecom regulator says direct intervention may be necessary to deliver more competition (CRTC)

Days before the end of his term, the chairman of Canada’s telecom regulator is warning that his successor may need to intervene directly in the wireless market to deliver more competition and lower prices for consumers.

U.S. could stand in way of armed drones for Canada; Preferred model comes with tight restrictions (Access to Information Canada)

The Liberal government’s plan to buy armed drones could face major delays because obtaining such technology needs approval from the U.S., according to documents obtained by the Ottawa Citizen.

Top International News

University eases guidelines on chalk sidewalk messages (Censorship International)  Pennsylvania university has eased rules about messages written in chalk on sidewalks following protests from an anti-abortion group.

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Weekly News Roundup (May 26)

By: Brittany Green

 Top Stories this Week

 Videotron appeals CRTC music decision (CRTC) http://business.financialpost.com/fp-tech-desk/videotron-appeals-crtc-ruling-to-stop-offering-unlimited-music-service

Quebecor Inc.’s Videotron has appealed the federal telecom regulator’s decision to outlaw its mobile phone plans that let customers stream unlimited music without extra data charges, stating it faces irreparable harm if forced to cancel the plans by the imposed deadline.

How Canadians pay for ‘net neutrality’ (CRTC) http://business.financialpost.com/fp-comment/what-canadians-will-lose-out-on-as-the-u-s-deregulates-the-internet-while-were-stuck-on-net-neutrality

The US announced that it is going to “kill the open Internet”. Can Canada save it?

How the laws on CSIS could change (Access to Information Canada) https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/how-the-powers-of-csis-could-change-under-possible-new-legislation/article35077908/

The government last week announced what cues it is taking from a recently concluded public consultation into security and intelligence issues, and Public Security Minister Ralph Goodale has indicated he may soon announce new legislation.

Top International News

Computer wins 2nd game against Chinese go champion (Censorship International) http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/computer-wins-2nd-game-chinese-champion-47630167

A computer beat China’s top player of go, one of the last games machines have yet to master, for a second time Thursday in a competition authorities limited the Chinese public’s ability to see.

Manchester Attack Will Change British Life for the Worse (freedom of expression International) https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/the-manchester-attack-will-change-british-life-for-the-worse/article35084237/

“Soft targets” are what security and intelligence officials call those busy civilian places where someone might set off a bomb undetected – airports, sporting events, nightspots, concerts – and gain attention by provoking a panicked response.

Facebook’s attempt to moderate content doesn’t address its main problem: Teitel (Censorship International) https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/05/23/facebooks-attempt-to-moderate-content-doesnt-address-its-main-problem-teitel.html

Facebook recently announced plans to hire thousands of new moderators to screen for violent, hateful, and sexually explicit content, a decision many politicians and rights advocates celebrated as a necessary step toward protecting FB’s billion-plus users, namely those who are minors.

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Weekly News Roundup (March 28)

By: Brittany Green 

Top Stories this Week

 Potential parliamentary reforms would strike a blow to democracy: Editorial (Access to Information Canada) https://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/2017/03/28/potential-parliamentary-reforms-would-strike-a-blow-to-democracy-editorial.html

Does your company have a cyberbreach strategy? Here’s why it should (Privacy Canada) https://digitalguardian.com/blog/data-breach-experts-share-most-important-next-step-you-should-take-after-data-breach-2014-2015

Continue reading “Weekly News Roundup (March 28)”

Weekly News Roundup (March 23)

By: Brittany Green

Top Stories this Week

 Lawyers for Snowden helpers want Ottawa’s aid (Snowden) https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/the-latest-us-hails-arrest-in-threats-on-jewish-centers/2017/03/23/de80c6dc-0fd2-11e7-aa57-2ca1b05c41b8_story.html?utm_term=.d17d239d08d2

Treading water as the level is rising (CRTC) https://www.pressreader.com/canada/toronto-star/20170323/281694024604937

Continue reading “Weekly News Roundup (March 23)”

Weekly News Roundup (Feb. 27)

By: Brittany Green

 Top Stories this Week

 ‘Alarming’ number of businesses hit by hackers in past year: poll; Nearly three in five polled ‘either suspect or know for certain’ they were victims of hacking attempts (Privacy Law Canada) http://www.theglobeandmail.com/technology/alarming-number-of-businesses-hit-by-hackers-in-past-year-poll/article34144277/

Plan is outsourcing by another name (CRTC) https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2017/02/24/plan-for-toronto-police-overhaul-is-outsourcing-by-another-name-dimanno.html

The trouble behind Canada’s failed First Nations water plants; A Globe and Mail study reveals the stories behind three of Canada’s most troubled on-reserve water treatment plants (Access to Information Canada) http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/the-trouble-behind-canadas-failed-first-nations-water-plants/article34131686/

Top International News

EU lawmakers, in unusual move, pull the plug on racist talk (Censorship International) http://finance.yahoo.com/news/eu-lawmakers-unusual-move-pull-plug-racist-talk-080431070.html

Muhammad Ali’s son detained at airport: ‘Are you Muslim?’ (Privacy Act International) http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/muhammad-ali-jr-airport-1.3999531

White House bars major news outlets from informal briefing (Access to Information International) http://www.cnbc.com/2017/02/25/white-house-bars-major-news-outlets.html

Weekly News Roundup (Feb. 1)

By: Brittany Green

 Top Stories this Week

Bell Media announces nationwide layoffs (CRTC) https://www.pressreader.com/canada/toronto-star/20170201/281956017512883

Good riddance to a bogus boreal forest ‘agreement’ (Defamation Canada) https://www.pressreader.com/canada/national-post-latest-edition/20170201/282243780321586

Fired CRTC commissioner takes cabinet dismissal to court; On the recommendation of Heritage Minister Melanie Joly, Raj Shoan was fired as regional commissioner for Ontario (CRTC) http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/fired-crtc-commissioner-takes-cabinet-dismissal-to-court/article33847866/

Use your loyalty to bargain with department stores; Sears customer service falls short over points redemption, until a Star columnist gets involved (Access to Information Canada) https://www.thestar.com/business/2017/01/31/use-your-loyalty-to-bargain-with-department-stores-roseman.html

Accessibility advocate appeals access to information fee (Access to Information Canada) https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2017/01/30/accessibility-advocate-appeals-access-to-information-fee.html

Top International News

Mystery over Chinese tycoon’s disappearance from Hong Kong (Censorship International) http://www.cp24.com/world/mystery-over-chinese-tycoon-s-disappearance-from-hong-kong-1.3265968

Breitbart speaker at Berkeley stirs debate over free speech (Defamation International) http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/nation-world/sns-bc-us–free-speech-or-hate-speech-20170131-story.html

Weekly News Roundup (Jan.26)

 By: Brittany Green

Top Stories this Week

Ottawa still failing to provide health care on reserves: report (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-still-failing-to-provide-adequate-health-care-on-reserves-report/article33746065/)

Greenpeace argues Resolute racketeering suit ‘brute force’ intimidation (http://www.nationalobserver.com/2017/01/24/news/greenpeace-argues-resolute-racketeering-suit-brute-force-intimidation)

Judges rules in favour of university in open-records case (http://www.metronews.ca/news/world/2017/01/24/judges-rules-in-favour-of-university-in-open-records-case.html)

Help wanted: Ottawa posts top CRTC job; The federal government is officially looking for applicants for the top job at Canada’s telecom and broadcast regulator. (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/help-wanted-ottawa-posts-top-crtc-job/article33712613/)

Top International News

French internet censorship rose sharply in 2016 (https://www.google.ca/search?q=French+internet+censorship+rose+sharply+in+2016&rlz=1C5CHFA_enCA709CA709&oq=French+internet+censorship+rose+sharply+in+2016&aqs=chrome..69i57.365j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8)

China cracks down on tools used to get around web filters (http://www.businessinsider.com/ap-china-cracks-down-on-tools-used-to-get-around-web-filters-2017-1)

Weekly News Roundup (January 18)

By: Brittany Green

Top Stories this Week

CRTC braces for emergency video and texting (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/next-generation-911-crtc-braces-for-emergency-video-and-texting/article33631341/)

Woman can’t sue Alberta regulator in fracking case: Supreme Court (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/woman-cant-sue-alberta-regulator-in-fracking-case-supreme-court/article33617446/)

My pal the car; Emotionally intelligent vehicles a technological dream – and a potential privacy nightmare (http://business.financialpost.com/news/transportation/my-pal-the-car-emotionally-intelligent-vehicles-a-technology-dream-but-potential-privacy-nightmare)

Ex- Halifax Professor Sues Over Explicit Photo Posted to Twitter (https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/01/16/ex-halifax-professor-sues-over-explicit-photo-posted-to-twitter.html)

Prominent ‘Nazi Hunter’ Solomon Littman Dies at Age 96 (https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2017/01/12/prominent-nazi-hunter-solomon-littman-dies-at-age-96.html)

Canada is a Prime Cybercrime Target- and it Needs Help Tackling Threats, Report Warns (https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/01/11/canada-is-a-prime-cybercrime-target-and-it-needs-help-tackling-threats-report-warns.html)

Top International News

Cambodian PM Hits Opposition Chief with New Defamation Suit (http://www.metronews.ca/news/world/2017/01/18/cambodian-pm-hits-opposition-chief-with-new-defamation-suit.html)

Russia hopes for pragmatic dialogue with US under Trump (http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2017/01/17/world/europe/ap-eu-russia-foreign-minister.html)