I’ve noticed a worrying trend in Canada where so-called “free-enterprisers” have stopped trying to sell their “services” to willing customers. Rather than spend money on advertising their product/service, they spend money lobbying government to have their product made mandatory. Why restrict your revenue base to merely those people who want and need your product? It’s so much nicer to also be able to collect money from people who don’t want or need your product. Since the free-loading-enterprisers demand to get paid for an unwanted “service”, they’re like squeegee kids. But the’re actually corporate types who wear fancy suits. Thus, I came up with the SKIPS acronym for “Squeegee Kids In Pinstripe Suits”.
The first group of free-loading-enterprisers I was going to concentrate on were the pay TV channels who managed to get the CRTC to slip them in to “basic cable”. However, when I moved to my new 6th floor condo, and hooked up an indoor antenna to my high-definition TV and scanned for digital channels, my jaw just about hit the floor. I’m in greater Toronto, with a clear view SSE towards the CN tower and Buffalo. I can get a whole bunch of Toronto and Buffalo digital channels, including high definition, for free OTA (Over The Air). So I didn’t bother with cable, and forgot about the mandatory pay TV issue. I may get back to it one of these days.
Of more immediate concern is the proposal by Canadian song writers to tax ALL CANADIAN INTERNET SUBSCRIBERS (including me) to pay for the thievery of a few. The proposal is detailed at the songwriters’ website
As the New York times mentioned in their blog a major ISP like Time-Warner sees over 50% of of its bandwidth usage coming from 5% of their users. So we’re talking about fining/taxing the innocent 95% to pay for the thievery of 5%. In the next few posts, I will outline what’s wrong with this idea.