Here in Canada there isn’t much choice in the way of Internet service providers — there’s Bell in the east, Telus in the west, Videotron in Québec, Rogers in Ontario and Shaw elsewhere. But your choices in any one location are usually limited to DSL or cable, and often just one of each.
Thankfully such is not the case for yours truly, a Rogers cable Internet customer for a few years in the late 1990s, then again from about 2004 until yesterday. Well actually, 30 days from yesterday — I have an extra month of paid service to reconsider, whether I want to or not.
So why the switch?
One reason is purely pragmatic. I’m going with a company called Teksavvy who are themselves wholesalers of Rogers cable Internet — I’ll be getting a better level of service from them than I do with Rogers for $17 CAD less each month.
Another reason is political. While I’ve heard nothing but good things about Teksavvy Rogers has been rightfully accused of all kinds of shady business practices in recent years, including but not limited to:
- The mandatory bundling of Yahoo! services with Rogers using a free Flickr Pro account as enticement, only to take that away a year and a half later, leaving my Rogers and Yahoo! accounts in an inextricable mess;
- Hijacking my web browser for bandwidth usage alerts & Rogers-branded search redirects;
- Deep-packet inspection (though Bell is guilty of this as well);
- And the olive on the shit sandwich, breaking local laws by spray-painting advertising on city streets in Toronto.
I’d like to believe that as a Teksavvy customer my online rights will be respected more than they were with Rogers, though if Bill C-32 becomes law it probably won’t matter.
What does matter is that my monthly Internet bill will no longer support this country’s Hearst dynasty, but instead a company more deserving. And I’m pretty stoked about that.