Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Support quality journalism
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
The Globe and Mail
Support quality journalism
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Globe and Mail website displayed on various devices
Just$1.99
per week
for the first 24 weeks

var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){console.log("scroll");var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1);

Janet Yale.

The chairwoman of a government-appointed panel looking at Canada’s telecommunications and broadcasting laws says it must take into account that international borders are disappearing.

Janet Yale says the panel’s goal is to come up with recommendations for legislation that will guide the communications industries for the next 20 to 30 years.

Ms. Yale was commenting at the Canadian Telecom Summit, an annual event that will feature a speech on Wednesday by Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains, one of the two ministers who appointed the panel last year.

Story continues below advertisement

Since then, Mr. Bains has proposed a new policy direction for the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission that puts more emphasis on competition and affordability.

Mr. Bains is also promoting a new “digital charter” released last week as the Trudeau government prepares to defend its record in the run-up to the federal election in October.

The Trudeau government has also said it will decide before the election whether to allow Chinese equipment maker Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. to supply equipment for Canada’s new networks despite U.S. opposition.

Ms. Yale said after her speech to the conference that members of her panel are going to keep their minds “open and independent of the political machinations that may be going on around us.”

“And what I said today was to encourage everybody, when they see our final report, to think not just about whether our recommendations align with their short-term interests, whoever they are,” she said.

“Think about what it’s going take for Canada to have a successful future that leverages digital technology, on the one hand, [and] addresses our cultural sovereignty and enhances the rights of digital citizens and digital consumers. That’s the goal.”

Canada’s telecom network companies have been spending billions of dollars annually to prepare their home and wireless services for new generations of technology that are about to become commercial.

Story continues below advertisement

At the same time, Canada’s media owners – including telecom providers such as BCE Inc. and Rogers Communications Inc. – are forced to confront the impact of international companies such as Google, Facebook and other giants.

“I think the work of the panel has to take into account that borders are disappearing when it comes to the way in which consumers access information and audio-visual content.

“And we have to be mindful in the ways which the global environment is changing and the way in which regulators in different parts of the world are addressing both the opportunities and challenges that go with that.”

But Ms. Yale declined to comment on what governments may chose to do before or after her panel is done its work.

Prior to releasing its recommendations next year, the panel will issue an interim report this month to summarize feedback gathered last fall through a series of public hearings and submissions.

Ms. Yale told her audience that they should limit their expectations for the interim report, saying it will only deal with what the panel has heard and not what it will recommend to legislators.

Story continues below advertisement

The panel is overseen by Mr. Bains, the minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, which is responsible for the Telecommunications Act; and Pablo Rodriguez, the Minister for Canadian Heritage, which is responsible for the Broadcasting Act.

Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies