Not Available In Canada

Sony has just released the Video Download Service on the PS3 and once again, a great offering of technology is not available in Canada. And why you ask? Here are a few possible reasons.

Our laws are in place only to protect the interests of the duopoly we lovingly know as Bell and Rogers. I would not be surprised if these laws prevented Sony from getting licensing to distribute in Canada. Our two ISPs control the internet by ensuring that they are the only viable providers for regular (home) consumers. Now we will be forced to use their services as content providers.

The Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) lets this happen by allowing our ISPs to use tools like bandwidth caps and throttling in the name of ‘anti-piracy’ or ‘network congestion’. With Bell’s and Rogers’ anti-competition tactics, it would cost Canadians dearly to use the other services, even if someone like Netflix or SonyVideoStore was allowed. Just a note that Bell’s Video store, and Rogers OnDemand Cable, are not subjected to any of their bandwidth limiting practices.

The CRTC is made up of a bunch of cronies, deep in the pockets of the likes of Bell and Rogers, and they will continue to enforce legislation that helps perpetuate the lack of choice for Canadians.

The Sony service would have been perfect, allowing me to download a rental or purchase, which I could then transfer to my portable device (PSP and possibly IPOD). All protection features included to assist with anti-piracy.

Admittedly even if the Sony Video Download service was available in Canada, my downloads would be slower than Zip DVD mailers, and I would most likely reach my caps after about 8 HD rentals. Anything more and my ISP would bill me by the MB.

It is apparent that the TV network licensing is very messy. There is a chance for movie downloads for Canada before TV show offerings, much like what happened with Xbox and Apple ITunes, which is fine with me. Hopefully it happens sooner than later.

It is my hope that my opinions are misguided on this issue and that the decisions from the CRTC this coming fall in regards to some net neutrality issues, will be in favour of some competition. That would mean Bell or Rogers are to deliver no throttling, no caps, just service.

In the meantime, someone has started an online petition on the matter. Not sure if it will have any affect as but anything for the cause. View or sign HERE.


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