Home > cdnpoli, CDNTech, Commentary, Digital Policy, Politics, Privacy > Canada’s Long Awaited Digital Economic Strategy Coming Soon

Canada’s Long Awaited Digital Economic Strategy Coming Soon

According to a recent article (sub req) by thewirereport.ca, Canada’s long  awaited digital economic strategy has been finalized and ready to be released.  What I would like to see:

End Usage Based Billing

Back a few years ago Canadians came out in force against usage based billing.  Then Industry Minister Tony Clement stated on usage based billing:

“It’s a huge issue for a country that wants to move forward on the internet for jobs, for creativity, for innovation,”

Since the government got involved in overturning the CRTC on forcing independent internet providers to adopt the scheme, many independent providers are still currently using usage based billing on their own free will.  That’s been a problem for multi-media companies like Netflix looking to expand services into Canada.  It may also halt the breaks on expanding digital services for Canadian gamers. The fact that digital investors and innovators are turning away from Canada due to pathetic and unnecessary data caps is not in line with governments agenda on the creation of digital jobs, and the fostering of digital innovation if we are to follow Clements comments from 2011.  Usage based billing by all providers (not just Bell, Rogers, and Telus)  has been a really big whacking stick in this country for our digital economy.

Grants for Coders

As we move further and further out of the PC era, the IT jobs have shifted towards computer programming, and application development.  That trend will continue big time in the mobile and tablet platforms.  There is a country wide shortage on good coders right now.  Educational grants and employer incentives should be considered to bolster Canadian enterprise and retail app development fields, and help keep Canadian coders in Canada.

Deal With Mess That is Canadian Telecom

Internet access is essential to the digital economy.  It has to be affordable, and non-restrictive to bolster digital innovations. Without affordable internet access on all devices, access to the digital economy becomes restricted as it is right now.  This is not just the case in the wireless telecom sector.  Broad reaching reforms and regulations are needed to keep these teleco’s in check.

Grants for R&D

From Nortel to Blackberry the problems facing Canada’s tech sector is the inability to keep up with innovation cycles.  Current innovation cycles in IT are approximately 18 months from research to development to deployment. That time frame decreases year after year as computing power doubles each year. We need to bolster our tech firms to get ahead of the game in developing competitive marketable products.

Update Canadian Privacy Laws

One of the biggest draw backs to the digital economy always has been keeping your business and consumers information from preying eyes.  Companies are increasingly under new security threats, and Canadian businesses often see IT security as an unnecessary expense due to our lax privacy enforcement laws.  With Canada being a part of the Five Eye’s surveillance networks, our IT firms have taken a big hit.  Updating Canadian privacy laws to ensure companies are and remain compliant with law is now a must to instill trust in the Canadian digital marketplace to investors and consumers.


I’ll have extensive coverage of the Digital Economic Strategy on this blog once it’s released.

  1. January 30, 2014 at 9:43 PM


    Is Canada preparing for anything? Upping their cyber security perhaps? Pros and Cons to it.

    But we definitely in the States need to realize that the wars will not be fought with the bulky and complex militaries of the 20th century. The military “industrial” complex cannot continue at the status quo. Intelligence wins wars these days.

    We need to be more intelligent.

    • January 30, 2014 at 9:55 PM

      I’m hoping for our government to show a little bit more intelligence regarding our digital economy with this plan. On a separate matter, our cyber security is being upped but it’s being sold to the public as something that will protect us from cyber bullies, rather than being bluntly honest.

      Our version of the NSA (CSEC) is pretty much fully engaged in same thing. Breaking News as of tonight: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/csec-used-airport-wi-fi-to-track-canadian-travellers-edward-snowden-documents-1.2517881

      We are essentially going through the same debate as you guys are in the US on the pro’s and cons of cyber security.

      • January 30, 2014 at 10:08 PM

        well said. It is going to be the dilemma of the next ten years.

        This Generation of Terror will be proceeded by the Post-Computer Generation. I will be interested to see at how each country grapples with that dilemma.

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