Net neutrality has slipped away even further in Canada recently, as Bell has “shaped” the bandwidth available to ISPs that rent space on the network from Bell, slowing down peer-to-peer transmissions in some cases from 5MB/sec to 60KB/sec. Bell has apparently shaped the traffic of its own direct customers for some time, but has until now kept their hands off other ISPs. The Globe and Mail article reporting this story estimates that p2p traffic accounts for something like 80% of online bandwidth use — that by perhaps 10% of all users.
The issue of throttling (as this restriction is sometimes called) in Canada is explored somewhat more fully in an article on Ars Technica.
Part of the problem seems to be that Bell’s and Rogers’ networks are insufficient to meet the demand for bandwidth, which is growing faster than expected. (Think YouTube…) Canadian bandwidth available to ordinary customers is poor by comparison with what is available in other developed countries. This, from an OECD report last year:
Japan, France, Korea, Sweden, and New Zealand led all countries surveyed in advertised broadband download speeds (see Figure 1). Japan led all countries with an advertised 93,693 Mbits per second speed, followed by France at 44,157 Mb/s, Korea at 43,301 Mb/s, Sweden 21,423 Mb/s, and New Zealand at 13,595 Mb/s broadband speed. The UK came in 12th at 10,624 Mb/s while the US came in at 14th at 8,860 Mb/sec.
Canada is 15th at 7.797 Mb/sec. behind Finland and Portugal, as well as the others named.