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Mission Statement

  • To ensure that all Canadians are able to participate in community-based communications and electronic information services by promoting and supporting local community network initiatives.
  • To represent and promote the Canadian community networking movement at the national and international level.

October 2013: In Memoriam

Gareth Shearman, President of Telecommunities Canada since 1998, died, October 14, 2013, after a lengthy struggle with cancer. In 1992, he was also instrumental in establishing the Victoria Free-Net Association - Canada's first Free-Net. Victoria Free-Net has posted a condolences page in his honour.

Darlene Thompson is now acting president.

May 2013: Victoria Free-net moves to new residence

As part of Victoria Free-Net's "transition" to life beyond CAP, we've moved from our 18 year home at Commerce Circle to a more compact, far less costly, location at the Vancouver Island Technology Park. The team of volunteers has literally moved heaven and hell over the last several months to accomplish this. Thursday, May 30th, was the last act, shutting down and moving the server room, and thus taking Free-Net off-line for a few short hours are now fully back online.

This Facebook URL should let anyone see the flavour of the turning point: Photos of VTN take-down

TC's communications with members and board members and advisors flow through Victoria Free-Net.

February 2011: Canada's Community Access Program (CAP)

September 2010 - CRTC intervention

TC supports CACTUS at CRTC

Telecommunities Canada (www.tc.ca) intervention re: Broadcasting notice of consultation CRTC 210-623 -- Call for comments on contributions by broadcasting distribution undertakings to local expression. TC supports the renewed proposal by the Canadian Association of Community Television Users and Stations (CACTUS) to use the 0.5% of cable gross revenues that would become available under the CRTC's proposal in 2010-623 for the establishment of a Community-Access Media Fund to which independent non-profit community-run access channels could apply.   [RTF 19KB]

January 2010 - National Strategy for Digital Inclusion

Updated January 19, 2010

2009 - The Future of the Internet

Open Internet Town Halls make their way to the east coast!

After hosting Open Internet Town Hall events in Vancouver, Ottawa and Toronto, Telecommunities Canada (www.tc.ca)  and SaveOurNet.ca are pleased to announce yet another exciting event, this time in Halifax.

On October 26th, the Dalhousie Student Union and along with the Chebucto Community Network (www.chebucto.ns.ca) will host a town hall titled "Who is Shaping your Digital Future?"  Keynote speaker will be Laura Murray, Queen's University Professor and digital copyright expert.  This will be followed by a panel of local experts who will explore topics such as net neutrality and the digital divide.

The event goes from 7:00p.m. to 9:30 pm, Monday, October 26th at the McInnes Room of the Dalhousie University Student Union Building.  For more information please see: http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/townhall/ and http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/news/ and http://thearcadianrecorder.blogspot.com/2009/10/who-is-shaping-your-digital-future.html

2009 - Report from Vancouver ICT Summit

A community discussion

At the 2009 ICT Summit, TeleCommunities Canada sponsored a community discussion on the need for a national strategy on the uses of the Internet for socio-economic development. The statement that emerged from this discussion suggests that on-line assets are among the social indicators that determine our health as a nation. It calls for a strategy guided by a national multi-stakeholder council - a cohesive single voice that reflects the diversity of our society:   [HTML 4.8KB]   [MSWord 34KB]

June 10 2009 - The Future of the Internet

Access, Openness and Inclusion - A Town Hall Discussion (Ottawa)

ACCESS, OPENNESS AND INCLUSION IN MEDIA are essential to a robust democracy and a healthy economy. The Internet is a basic component of our society and essential to every aspect of our lives. Strengthening the infrastructure of Canada's Internet is therefore crucial to the prosperity of citizens socially, economically, and politically, and the country as the whole.

Ottawa's open Internet Town Hall took place at the Ottawa Public Library, June 10, 7-9 pm. Introduction by Steve Anderson - co-founder, http://SaveOurNet.ca/ with speakers: Michael Geist - Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law, Charlie Angus - MP Timmins James Bay, and Rocky Gaudrault - CEO, Teksavvy Solutions Inc.

Presented by: Campaign for Democratic Media, Telecommunities Canada, Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic, SaveOurNet.ca, InternetForEveryone.ca.

This event was made possible through the generous support of the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)

Community Networking Advocacy

February 2009 - TC represents NARALO for ICANN

January 2009 - Social and Economic Development

January 2009 - Infrastructure on [the] line

Talking about social change in a digital age

In our digital age, what kind of society do we want? Although still rare, participatory forums to address this question are beginning to occur at the community-level. In the hope of seeding more of them, we intend to use these web pages to share some examples of community-based dialogue on this important public policy issue.

December 2008 - Broadband as infrastructure

October 2008 - Internet for Everyone

March 2008 - National Strategy for Digital Inclusion

June 28, 2007 - ICANN North America RALO signing

Photos of the NARALO signing in San Juan:
All Photos
Darlene Thompson - N-CAP
Gareth Shearman - Telecommunities Canada

October 2006 - Alternative Telecommunications Policy Forum

TC members played a major role in the Alternative Telecommunications Policy Forum organized by the Canadian Research Alliance for Community Innovation and Networking (CRACIN). CRACIN co-investigator Marita Moll was one of the forum organizers. TC directors were active participants in panels and workshop sessions. For more information see the Forum Website.

Article on Forum issues published in Straight Goods (reproduced here with permission of the authors):   5.2 KB (HTML)   4.7 KB (plain text)

August 2006 - Telecommunications Policy Review

A representation from Telecommunities Canada to the Telecommunications Policy Branch, Industry Canada, with respect to: Order under Section 8 of the Telecommunications Act - Draft Policy Direction from Cabinet to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission. This is available on the Advocacy and Reports page entitled: TC REPRESENTATION ON CABINET DIRECTIVE TO THE CRTC .

June 2006 - Telecommunications Policy Review

A critique of the Report of the Telecommunications Policy Review Panel is available on the Advocacy and Reports page, entitled CANADIANS ONLINE - CREATORS NOT CONSUMERS .

November 2005 - Four Internet Futures

In seeking a way to understand the issues driving the Internet Governance debate at WSIS, TC Board member, Garth Graham, has used scenarios to produce a brief synthesis and overview titled, Experiencing the Information Society: four Internet futures .

August-September 2005 - Telecom Policy Review

TC first and second responses are available on the Advocacy and Reports page.

May 2005 - TC active in WSIS/WGIG consultation

Internet Governance

The UN Secretary General's Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG) is developing a report for the November 2005 World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). In early May, the WGIG posted a questionnaire that seeks to gather public opinion on institutional arrangements related to Internet governance. They seek views on the functioning of the Internet Corporation For Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the Government Advisory Council (GAC), and recommendations about whether another mechanism is needed and what it might look like. The questionnaire is available at the WGIG site: www.wgig.org. A TC comment to the discussion wiki accompanying the questionnaire is available here.

Civil Society

TC had a major presence at the Canadian Commission for UNESCO sponsored conference "Paving the road to Tunis WSIS II: The views of Canada's Civil Society on the Geneva Plan of Action and the Prospects for Phase II" Winnipeg, May 13-15, 2005.

The following TC directors were in attendance:

  • Brian Beaton,
  • Michael Gurstein,
  • Marita Moll,
  • David Murdoch,
  • Peter Royce,
  • Gareth Shearman,

The TC statement "Beyond the Information Society; Enabling Communities to Create the World We Want / Au-delà de la société de l'information; Permettre aux communautés de créer le monde que nous désirons" was well received and is listed in the final communiqué of the conference among the WSIS sites available for further consultation. A draft version of the final conference communiqué is currently available here.

TC President, Gary Shearman and Peter Frampton, chair of the National Association of Community Access Programs participated in a panel on "Civil society's role in building a global information society." Their presentation 10 years of investment -- CAP -- The Community Access program in Canada is available here.


A Brief History of TC

Meetings, Legal Documents, and Bylaws


Historic Web Site Section

2010: TeleCommunities Web Update in Progress

We are slowly (very, very slowly) updating this most ancient, historic, and now venerable section of our Web Site. That involves deciding what this site should be about, choosing open-source software to build it, and then keeping it updated. The technology is the easy part.

Until our site update is complete, treat much of this historic material as "the way were were" not "the way we are"!


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