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Bell Canada To Collect User Data For Advertising

Soulskill posted about 10 months ago | from the because-it's-not-enough-that-they-already-pay-you-money dept.

Canada 127

beerdragoon writes "One of Canada's biggest mobile and TV providers will soon begin collecting detailed information on usage patterns of its subscribers. Starting November 16th, Bell plans on using this information to provide targeted ads for subscribers. According to Bell this policy will allow customers 'to receive Internet advertising that's relevant to them rather than the random online advertising they're receiving now.' Customers have until the 16th to opt out of the targeted ads, but there doesn't appear to be a way to opt out of the data collection. Apparently this is not illegal, but it is certainly considered unethical by many."

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If you don't like it (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45204887)

then start your own ISP.

Wait, does Canada have Republicans?

Re:If you don't like it (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about 10 months ago | (#45205155)

Barriers to entry, do you understand it?

Re:If you don't like it (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206077)

Barriers to entry, do you understand it?

Nope, he's a mexican.

Re:If you don't like it (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205173)

Unfortunately they more or less have a government backed monopoly on the infrastructure.

Dunno how this will effect the competitors which more or less are resellers.

Re:If you don't like it (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 10 months ago | (#45205589)

The problem as I see is is that the lines are owned by Bell (or Rogers in the case of cable). There are many independent ISPs, but they all run through the infrastructure of Bell or Rogers. If your internet connection doesn't work, apart from basic trouble shooting (reset modem, check settings), the independent ISPs have to ask Rogers/Bell to fix the problem for them. You can guess how fast Bell/Rogers will do this. I've been toying with the idea of going with TekSavvy (a popular indie ISP), but all the people I know who have switched (not many, but still quite a few people), have had multi-day outages because they were unable to have the problem fixed directly by their ISP. Until this type of problem is fixed, they're Indie ISPs can't offer a reasonable level of service.

Re:If you don't like it (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205753)

Bull,

I have been with smaller ISP's in ontario for 20+ years now, I agree that all the data goes through their pipes, but multi day service outages haven't ever happened to me or anyone I know. Actually Bell / Rogers has 24 hours to fix it once it's gone up from the ISP and they usually do quicker than that.

I am with ViaNet out of Sudbury, I live in Oshawa (a long distance away) and the only service interruptions I have ever had at 3 business locations and my house have been because I am a moron and forgot to pay my bill for 5 months.

Re:If you don't like it (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 10 months ago | (#45205937)

Glad you're getting better service then the people I know. I live in Ottawa, so my experiences and those of people I know may be different than yours. If I knew people with experiences like yours in my area, I'd be more likely to switch.

For TekSavvy, with Cable, they have to send an email to Rogers when something needs fixing. Then there's a full day for them to respond to that email. Sometimes it gets fixed with that first email, but sometimes it doesn't. The only communication channel between the two is email. I know a guy who was without internet for 2 weeks, because there was a problem with the lines. They kept insisting the lines were fine, but they weren't as was proven by the fact that the problem promptly disappeared after they finally replaced the lines.

Re:If you don't like it (1)

supertrooper (2073218) | about 10 months ago | (#45205985)

I have cable internet with Distributel (over Rogers network) and last year I had an outage that lasted around 2 weeks. It was exactly like that. Rogers didn't give a crap about fixing the problem. They do this on purpose, which actually makes me hate them even more. Same with Bell Canada. I hate these companies. They received government subsidies from our sweet tax dollars to build their infrastructure. Now they are simply robbing Canadians with their high service fees and crappy service. As long as I have the choice I will never give them money.

Re:If you don't like it (1)

hazah (807503) | about 10 months ago | (#45206131)

And for an added bonus, Bell is currently taking Canadians to court because they don't like the rules we make them play by. Guess who's footing that bill...

Re:If you don't like it (3, Informative)

Mashiki (184564) | about 10 months ago | (#45206261)

Actually Bell / Rogers has 24 hours to fix it once it's gone up from the ISP and they usually do quicker than that.

Actually according to the TPIA agreements that most of the other ISP's have it's 48 hours, in fact it got so bad not all that long ago that the delays for repairs from Tek to Rogers were in the 7 day range. CNOC has recently filed with the CRTC to fix the TPIA issues and issues to repair, as well as long ticket repair delays. And this is happening across the spectrum, not just with Tek, or Velcom, or Start, but everyone DSL and cable, and getting screwed over.

If you're Canadian, you should write a letter to the CRTC. Information on it can be found here. [dslreports.com]

Myself, I've been with Tek back in Ontario for 3 years. I had one two day outage thanks to rogers breaking the routing tables, while doing a node update. Tek gave me the two days back discounted, I'm out in Alberta until December doing a deployment for a small town and the only thing I can get here is LTE for internet, because Telus refuses to upgrade the number of ports available. As a fun point, that's been on-going for 4 years, if you move in this city--you can't move your DSL with you either.

Re:If you don't like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206379)

In Toronto the big ISPs are notorious for this... Like going to do maintenance on a hub and 'accidentally' disconnecting TekSavvy subscribers. I've heard multiple people experience outages like this, where for no apparent reason, people get disconnected, and it takes a call and a visit by a tech to get it back up.

Re:If you don't like it (0)

phoenix_rizzen (256998) | about 10 months ago | (#45206313)

There are many independent ISPs, but they all run through the infrastructure of Bell or Rogers.

Except when it runs through the infrastructure for Telus, Shaw, NorthWestTel, SaskTel, the fibre ISPs on the West Coast, CableTron (I think, whatever it is that Quebec has), the maritimes telcos, etc. There's a hell of a lot more to the telecommunications industry in Canada than just Bell and Rogers. That may be all you poor saps in Ontaria have; but there's more to Canada than just Ontario (as much as you may not like to think so).

Re:If you don't like it (1)

S.O.B. (136083) | about 10 months ago | (#45206943)

I've had a TekSavvy DSL line for 6 or 7 years now and in that time I've had two outages and one performance issue. The outages were resolved in under 6 hours and the performance issue in about 12 hours.

Their support people really know what they're talking about and although they follow a script, like any call centre, they actually understand and don't just read from it. And even though they don't officially support Linux they also don't run they other way when you mention it.

Re:If you don't like it (2)

currently_awake (1248758) | about 10 months ago | (#45206167)

We have the conservative party. They are a right wing political party roughly equivalent to the Democrats.

The Land Of The Negative Option (2)

Freshly Exhumed (105597) | about 10 months ago | (#45204891)

Canadian telecom carriers have used the negative option for decades, been scolded by consumer groups and regulators almost every time, yet keep coming back with the old "we're going to go ahead and do this to you unless you say no, and by the way you can pick up the NO form by... um... we're not sure where it is..."

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (4, Informative)

xtal (49134) | about 10 months ago | (#45205017)

You can't opt out of the monitoring and profiling.

You can only opt out of ad delivery.

Yes, it's that evil.

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205503)

You can't opt out of the monitoring and profiling.

You can only opt out of ad delivery.

Yes, it's that evil.

Before it was that your Tivo might think you're gay... now the neighbor will be gay by association.

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 10 months ago | (#45205551)

Whether computers estimate you're 40% likely to be interested in Depends and 0% interested in Pampers or vice-versa is a tiny evil compared to other monitoring we now know goes on.

I laugh at when we used to think advertising profiling by computer was our "big concern".

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (1)

hazah (807503) | about 10 months ago | (#45206165)

The primary concern is the profiling itself. Everything else is just gravy.

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (2)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 10 months ago | (#45206423)

Ad profiling is as stupid as Clippy. "Hey you have bought a new car, maybe you want to buy a new car!"

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (4, Funny)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about 10 months ago | (#45205061)

you can pick up the NO form by... um... we're not sure where it is...

In cellar with the lights out, in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying 'Beware of the Leopard'?

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205447)

I recently got FIBE. I'm canceling it and going with videotron instead, unless i default to opt-out. I have no interest spending hours on the phone with their IDIOT drones who don't even listen to you.

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 10 months ago | (#45205659)

I remember way back when they (I think it was Rogers) doubled everybody's cable package and just started billing them for it. They got the crap kicked out of them for that one.

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (1)

c-A-d (77980) | about 10 months ago | (#45206489)

The BC Legislature actually passed a bill that prohibits negative option billing when that happened. It's probably still in effect.

Re:The Land Of The Negative Option (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45207439)

Who else remembers Rogers "negative option marketing" a few years ago? It ended with them going and installing filters on everyone's house to "block" those channels.

Can't opt out of data collection? (4, Insightful)

DontBlameCanada (1325547) | about 10 months ago | (#45204961)

Glad I'm not a Bell subscriber, but damn... Now that the line has been crossed I expect every alternate service provider will start doing the same thing.

Fuck.

Re:Can't opt out of data collection? (1)

mevets (322601) | about 10 months ago | (#45205369)

Bet you 5 bucks teksavvy won't. Another 5 that Rogers will try, and will inadvertently amuse many people in the process.

Re:Can't opt out of data collection? (2)

webmosher (322834) | about 10 months ago | (#45205653)

Perhaps Teksavvy won't themselves, but knowing Bell, it would not surprise me to see them collecting data on their wholesale DSL lines that they lease to Teksavvy.

With all the BS they were pulling with capping the wholesale lines, it would actually be more of a surprise if they weren't... "Oh we had to install the monitoring appliances in our core. We just happen to monitor everyone now."

Bleh!

Re:Can't opt out of data collection? (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 10 months ago | (#45206331)

From Marc of TSI. [dslreports.com]

we don't sell our customer data to anybody... I'm looking into what this is but it has nothing to do with us or our customers.

Official answer:

The underlying AUPs of the incumbents apply to the connections used to provide TekSavvy' services. This is so the incumbents can control network abuse and stop unlawful conduct relating to the use of the connection.

The incumbents retail terms of service however, that apply to their own end users, do not apply to the customers of TekSavvy.

The incumbents do not have the right to breach the privacy of retail customers of TekSavvy.

Re:Can't opt out of data collection? (1)

c-A-d (77980) | about 10 months ago | (#45206511)

Doesn't Teksavvy use PPPoE over Bell's lines? What's to stop them from implementing MPPE and encrypting their customer content? (a google search indicates that this question came up in 2007.)

Re:Can't opt out of data collection? (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 10 months ago | (#45207229)

Doesn't Teksavvy use PPPoE over Bell's lines? What's to stop them from implementing MPPE and encrypting their customer content? (a google search indicates that this question came up in 2007.)

They use PPPoE but use their own server for handling authorization. What's stopping them from implementing MPPE? Probably Bell.

Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (5, Insightful)

xtal (49134) | about 10 months ago | (#45204967)

I am drafting my complaint to the Privacy commissioner, and you should too. The commissioner has real teeth and Bell will definately have to defend what they're doing. As a regulated utility they do not have right to unilaterally foist this upon people. It's repugnant and evil.

http://www.priv.gc.ca/index_e.asp [priv.gc.ca]

The terms are really horrible. Also, the fine print says they're going to collect and use it anyway - you can opt out of the ads. I don't have Bell TV or Phone - just internet - so how, exactly, do they intend to serve me ads?

Get angry about this. The commisioner can't do anything without complaints. Give them some.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 10 months ago | (#45205085)

Or engage in violence. Internet access shouldn't be a suicide pact.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Anne_Nonymous (313852) | about 10 months ago | (#45205205)

Well this explains all the ads for beaver on the internet.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Kingkaid (2751527) | about 10 months ago | (#45205337)

Bell already serves you ads when you use their DNS server. For websites that don't exist their DNS redirects you to advertise sponsored pages/searches provided by Bell. Rogers does the same.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | about 10 months ago | (#45205391)

so how, exactly, do they intend to serve me ads?

Deep packet inspection + replacement of common ad providers like DoubleClick in third party websites?

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Anrego (830717) | about 10 months ago | (#45205471)

replacement of common ad providers like DoubleClick in third party websites

It's down on my list of things that piss me off about this, but how the hell is that fair to websites supporting themselves through advertising.

This whole thing should be illegal. I'm blown away that it's not, and am hoping this enrages enough people to get the process rolling on making it illegal.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 10 months ago | (#45205709)

haha, you used enraged when talking about canadians! Canadians are so political apathetic we've let the government slowly destroying anything good in the past decade. Why, we're almost as apathetic and laissez-faire with our government now as the USians are!

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Anrego (830717) | about 10 months ago | (#45205987)

I was actually quite impressed with the push back against the 1996-level caps usage caps the CRTC tried a while back.

In that case we were talking direct cost to consumers though. Privacy it's a little more abstract and hard to get the average non-geek angry about. Then again, how many people have lets say "unique" web browsing habits (office stapler porn) that they may not want driving ads their wife/kids/friends using their wifi/etc would see. That's probably the cheat code right there.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 10 months ago | (#45206103)

1996 we were still Canadian and had stuff to be proud of. 2001 we told Bush to shove it with his FUD campaign against Iraq. Then we became more greedy, collected more debt, and voted in Harper (the man which even god cannot bring light to his eyes), ushering in a country wide apathy and greed and environmental destruction that was once only limited to the west.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

c-A-d (77980) | about 10 months ago | (#45206527)

Tell you what, we'll take our apathy and greed and environmental destruction and you can have Quebec.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

master_kaos (1027308) | about 10 months ago | (#45205569)

My comment about this is, if they are replacing ads are they also depriving the websites from their ad revenue? I know ad block does the same but at least it is a user choice and I am not getting the ad revenue, but they are basically stealing revenue.

It would be almost like me rebroadcasting bells satelitte stations and then replacing their ads with my own, I would get sued 6 ways from Sunday.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | about 10 months ago | (#45205811)

For the record, my parent comment was a theoretical way that they could serve these ads; it has no basis in any known Bell plans that I've read.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

CKW (409971) | about 10 months ago | (#45206603)

Doesn't that blatantly violate the copyright of the websites who are serving that data?

Doesn't doubleclick have enough lawyers to blow Bell back to the stone age?

I specifically remember years ago, when someone tried to build a CLIENT SIDE application that allowed you and others to "comment on top of" a website as it was displayed in your browser, they got completely blown out of the water over this, because they were "defacing and modifying someone else's copyright'd content" -- and that wasn't even as clear as this, that was in your browser after it had been displayed, this is flat out interception of communication between me and a third party and MODIFICATION of said data.

It's just completely fucked up. Everyone needs to enable SSL on their websites, cpu and bandwidth be damned.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (3, Informative)

nblender (741424) | about 10 months ago | (#45205491)

I checked when I got the notice the other day. You can't opt out of the ads. You have two buttons you can click:

- I want Random ads
- I want target ads

There is no:

- I don't want ads

button.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

Andrewkov (140579) | about 10 months ago | (#45206747)

Damn trick questions.

Looks like they're already on it (5, Informative)

phorm (591458) | about 10 months ago | (#45206663)

According to CBC, the privacy commissioner is Already Starting an Investigation [www.cbc.ca]

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206789)

Actually the privacy commissioner is at least thinking of doing something according to the news. It doesn't hurt to have a few thousands complains though.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/privacy-commissioner-to-investigate-bell-s-data-collecting-1.2158593

>Canada's privacy commissioner will be investigating after Bell informed customers by letter that it plans to begin collecting detailed information about their consumption habits in order to offer “relevant ads.”

>Scott Hutchinson, a spokesman for the privacy commissioner, told CBC Montreal that his office has received several complaints.

Re:Canadians: Complain to the Privacy Comissioner (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 10 months ago | (#45206969)

As a dual citizen, I agree.

Privacy is in the Canadian Constitution, and Corporations aren't.

Then users will switch to their competitors... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45204973)

And this is why monopolies are bad.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (4, Informative)

NIK282000 (737852) | about 10 months ago | (#45205009)

What competitors? I switched from bell to teksavvy and 9 out of 10 people I know had no idea it even existed. Even after switching I'm still at the mercy of cogeco because they own the lines around here. When there is a service interruption cogeco, rogers and bell make sure that teksavvy customers are the last to get their service back.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205097)

This is somewhat true, but there are distinct advantages to TekSavvy which to me outweigh the drawbacks.

1) They do NOT DNS-hijack/redirect (Robellus does)
2) They throttle less
3) When you call them to support, you talk to a knowledgeable person in Canada, not a script-monkey overseas.

They also offer unlimited monthly transfers and static IPs for a fair price - neither of which you can get from Robellus for even close to the same cost.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205133)

3) When you call them to support, you talk to a knowledgeable person in Canada, not a script-monkey overseas./p ... but unfortunately, they can't do anything, they need to wait for the Robellus tech to go on-site.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205181)

Happy start.ca customer here. No unlimited transfer, but the customer service is even better than TekSavvy, and no dry loop fees.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (1)

alexo (9335) | about 10 months ago | (#45206981)

I can also list 3 distinct TSI advantages:

1) They are not Bell.
2) They are not Rogers.
3) They are not Telus.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (2)

diodeus (96408) | about 10 months ago | (#45205297)

It's BELL MOBILITY, not BELL INTERNET.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (2)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 10 months ago | (#45205459)

for now. Smartphone users are being used as beta-testers.

Re:Then users will switch to their competitors... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205639)

Not yet, but on one outside of Bell can say if they are not going to do the same to their internet.
At least there are some alternatives to the mobile carriers in Canada: Wind Mobile, Mobilicity.

What's new? (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 10 months ago | (#45204983)

Every other provider is looking around thinking "we've been doing this for years."

On the plus side (1)

ScottCooperDotNet (929575) | about 10 months ago | (#45205033)

Now maybe I won't see as many erectile dysfunction, tampon, and reverse mortgage ads during pro sports.

Re:On the plus side (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 10 months ago | (#45205429)

Well, at least not the reverse mortgage ads, anyways. Who'd want to reverse mortgage a cardboard box?

Re:On the plus side (1)

Andrewkov (140579) | about 10 months ago | (#45206707)

That's the typical demographic of sports watchers.. but you forgot light beer.

Opt Out! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205035)

It's not like Bell is providing an essential service or is a monopoly. Internet? Switch to TekSavvy. Cellular? Switch to Wind or Moblicity. TV? Well, if you think TV is a necessity, I pity your lost soul. Just give it up and get some fresh air, or get shows online.

Re:Opt Out! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205099)

It's not like Bell is providing an essential service or is a monopoly. Internet? Switch to TekSavvy..

May I be the first to say : Teksavvy is simply a Bell/Rogers/Cogeco/Videotron/ reseller. What difference will it make?

Re:Opt Out! (1)

LikwidCirkel (1542097) | about 10 months ago | (#45205143)

People keep saying this but it IS NOT TRUE!!! Teksavvy leases ONLY the last mile, because there is no other way to do it. The first hop is a router completely owned and controlled by TekSavvy. I can trace routes and run all kinds of other utilities which show very clearly that TekSavvy is NOT a reseller.

Re:Opt Out! (1)

DontBlameCanada (1325547) | about 10 months ago | (#45205237)

Correction, the first hop that decrements your TTL and returns the expiry notification is a TekSavvy device.

Any number of silent routers and switches could be mining data in the Bell/Rogers owned "last mile."

Re:Opt Out! (2)

Guspaz (556486) | about 10 months ago | (#45205677)

TekSavvy leases more than just the last mile, they also lease the aggregation network. For users in eastern Canada, TekSavvy's entire network is constrained to a single building in downtown Toronto. As a Montreal TekSavvy user, my path to a server on the Internet goes through nothing but Bell hardware all the way until it hits 151 Front St. in Toronto, at which point it gets dumped into somebody else's network again (one of TSI's upstream providers).

Independent ISPs are not resellers, but to say that they're only getting the "last mile" from Bell is incredibly inaccurate.

Re:Opt Out! (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 10 months ago | (#45205481)

Bell are a monopoly in all the small markets. You only have other options if you live in Montreal, Québec city, etc.

Re:Opt Out! (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 10 months ago | (#45206393)

Bell are a monopoly in all the small markets.

Yeah that's not true at all, people just can't be bothered to search. The city where I live in, in Ontario has ~35k people, I have 57 ISP's to choose from, the next nearest town has ~8k people, they have 70 ISP's to chose from. If I choose a major city like London, or K-W you can easily see 80-140 ISP's. The only places where Bell, Rogers, Telus, etc are a monopoly are in subdivisions where they're installing and forcing people into a contract term when they buy a new house. www.canadianisp.ca [canadianisp.ca] is a godsend.

Re:Opt Out! (1)

MachDelta (704883) | about 10 months ago | (#45206115)

Early termination fees are a bitch.

Encrypt everything (2)

WaffleMonster (969671) | about 10 months ago | (#45205153)

Or switch to an ISP that does not insist on treating their customers like shit.

Re:Encrypt everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205211)

Or switch to an ISP that does not insist on treating their customers like shit.

Does that even exist?

Re:Encrypt everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205405)

Sonic.net in Northern Ca. :-)

Re:Encrypt everything (1)

LikwidCirkel (1542097) | about 10 months ago | (#45205425)

Yes. Pretty much anyone who wasn't a cable or phone company in the 80s. So, that excludes Bell, Rogers, Shaw, Videotron, Telus, MTS, and possibly other provincial entities.

Notable alternatives are TekSavvy (a hybrid business, not a pure reseller), start.ca, Wind Mobile, Moblicity... possibly some others like Primus and Distributel who I believe are pure resellers.

Re:Encrypt everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205563)

Bell is the worst customer service I have had anywhere on the globe, and I've worked on 4 continents. Also what the f*@# is with being forced into channel packages I don't even want nor watch?? How about getting whoever is training those service reps FIRED?

Re:Encrypt everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206221)

Bell is the worst customer service I have had anywhere on the globe, and I've worked on 4 continents. Also what the f*@# is with being forced into channel packages I don't even want nor watch?? How about getting whoever is training those service reps FIRED?

Telus has by far the worst customer service. I spoke with their "support" people about configuring a Telus DSL modem/router box to allow SSH inbound so I could help my Mom when she has PC problems. As soon as I used words like "firewall" and "SSH" and "fixed LAN IP", they just shutdown and kept repeating "we don't support that" over and over. Telus support people didn't even know what DHCP is!

Funny thing is - everything was working up until the time Telus came over and "fixed" something. Prior to Telus service call, I had everything set up and I could SSH into my Mom's PC and help her out.

Telus sucks. It's true.

Re:Encrypt everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206153)

RTFA. This is Bell pulling a PRISM, not something ISP-related (though I wouldn't put it past Bell or any of its major competitors/regional equivalents to go there). And if you know of a decent mobile service provider that doesn't require that you bend over, there are millions of Canadians who would love to know who that is.

Cellular contracts (1)

phorm (591458) | about 10 months ago | (#45206525)

And how do you switch to another cellular provider without incurring penalties?
Actually, I'm wondering if this could be used as a basis for terminating contracts. I'd love to dump my provider (Virgin, a subsidiary of Bell) if I could due to this bullshit.

I've heard that when services are greatly changed the ability to terminate a contract is possible. Anyone know if this counts?

TekSavvy ... double-plus good (1)

Peter Kingsbury (3046159) | about 10 months ago | (#45205197)

Not to mention, I got me a Betty Behave poster during one of their promotions. :-)

Adblock to the rescue (1)

johanw (1001493) | about 10 months ago | (#45205213)

The best answer to that is to block their ads completely. And while you're at it all other annoying ads too.

Re:Adblock to the rescue (3, Insightful)

Anrego (830717) | about 10 months ago | (#45205407)

I'm more concerned with whatever magic they are doing to get the list of websites I'm visiting. Be it transparent proxy of packet inspection, it seems totally over the line.

Get TV OTA (1)

LeadSongDog (1120683) | about 10 months ago | (#45205257)

The receivers are just that. Unidirectional. So what if you lose most channels full of pathetic content, you'll just have more free time to find the way out of your parents' basement!

Re:Get TV OTA (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 10 months ago | (#45206191)

Thanks for the tip! Now, how do I use it to make phone calls since this is about a cellular provider??

Fuck (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205327)

First off, I'm usually a fairly pragmatic person and not typically the "omg I'm cancelling my service tonight" type, but jesus fuck.. if this happens it's time to switch to someone (although I wonder if resellers are going to be feeding data into this as well).

On the technical side, is this some kind of transparent proxy, or are they doing deep packet inspection. Either way, way over the line...

Been done before, and dropped (3, Interesting)

h2oliu (38090) | about 10 months ago | (#45205351)

Charter tried this in the US. It didn't last long. When someone's kids were targeted for ads based on dad's browsing things get ugly.

Submit complains to the CRTC by making a petition (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205361)

We should submit a complains to the CRTC by making a petition, I know its not always working but if enought sign it and send it they may decide to do something about it.

Bell, unethical? No need to repeat yourself. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205395)

Ask any Canadian unfortunate enough to be roped into using them.

Although... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45205475)

.... at least you can opt out, unlike some sites where you have no choice, like Facebook...

Hat Lady (1)

speedlaw (878924) | about 10 months ago | (#45205669)

Searched on line for a vacation once. Six months of being followed around by a Club Med Ad....creepy. Same ad, variety of websites....... Loyal adblock user now. I never really minded, but do I need a "personal Barker ?" No, I don't.

VPN (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | about 10 months ago | (#45205879)

I use a VPN service at $5 a month to keep browsing private as well as ensure access to skype in countries that block it. I wonder how valuable browsing data would be if you just randomly loaded pages form a list of say 10K urls; especially if a significant percentage of users did that 24x7?.

Good excuse... (1)

Fantasio (800086) | about 10 months ago | (#45205941)

Bell Canada : What are you complaining about ?... we're doing much less than the NSA, and we're doing that for your own good !

I guess that Bell Canada (like many others) now feels entitled to spy on everybody.

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206057)

As if I needed another reason to avoid Bell...
Not only were they throttling their already abysmal service, but now this? Glad I switched.

This is why I switched to Teksavvy (2)

ilsaloving (1534307) | about 10 months ago | (#45206219)

This is why I switched to Teksavvy. I got fed up with the bullshit Rogers and Bell were pulling, a long time ago. I haven't regretted the decision.

Not only does Teksavvy not try to foist bullshit on their customers, but they actively fight for consumer rights.

Re:This is why I switched to Teksavvy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206769)

But are Teksavvy DSL users on the Bell network immune to this? I would think since Teksavvy traffic runs on the Bell network, it will be collected and analyzed. Actually, maybe not because Bell won't be able to correlate it with customer data. Or will they? Bell had to come to my house to hook it up, so they know something about me.

Never underestimate bells greed (1)

vladilinsky (1071536) | about 10 months ago | (#45206529)

Its worse than just that, i just tried to opt out, (I know I should not be on bell to begin with, but my wife set up the phone plans) the options are do you want targeted adds, or random unfiltered adds. Where is no adds, i am paying you way to much money for to little service. I will accept adds if I am getting a free service from someone, but when I am already drastically overpaying for my phone. No chance in hell. I am sending them a letter informing them that I will be leaving there service as in the spring when my contract is up and telling all of my friends to do the same thing.

Damnit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206957)

I already cancelled my service with them earlier this year. This makes me want to renew my service, just so I can cancel it again. OH WAIT, My mom uses Bell...

Bell Canada is owned by the Teachers Pension Fund (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45206995)

Bell Canada is owned by the Ontario Teachers Pension Fund.

So when you think Union -- protecting Canadian jobs -- in reality is the the greatest outsourcer of jobs to India and decimimation of Canadian jobs.

They also use their ownership to fund a party which increased their wages and was reflected in a positive spin in the media organizations which belong to their assets. Can we say CTV Network & Globe and Mail.

They have used their assets to fund a third party lobby group that ensures the victory of their political patron -- The Liberal Party of Ontario -- thru an organization that calls itself the working family coalitions during election time that decimate the parties oposing the Liberals.

Getting pack to the Bell Canada -- they are owned by an organization which has great disdain for political parties that may oppose their wealth creation (creation is the wrong word)(thus looting of a major Oligrachy they own). This same organization has no ill effects terminating Canadian workers for incompetent Indian workers. Hey pension profit is all that matters. Kind of speaks to the goal of these unions -- self betterment over betterment of employees under their ownership. -- screw customer service.

So if you want to direct your anger -- do not direct your anger at Bell but their owners with is the Ontario Teachers Pension Fund which is owned by the Ontario Unionized Teachers who believe in all the shit we believe in except well when it taints our profits.

In essecence if the Teachers union can effect political change thru their ownership of media organizations -- are they selling out consumer rights in order to make a profit -- I think so.

What is wrong with this picture.

Re:Bell Canada is owned by the Teachers Pension Fu (3, Informative)

dk20 (914954) | about 10 months ago | (#45207601)

Not to burst your bubble, but Bell is a publicly owned company. It trades on the TSX/NYSE under ticket "BCE" and is 45% institutional owned. This means the majority of the holders are not large institutions.

As for Teachers pension plan their holdings are now below $100MM (well, they dont show up on their reports for positions > 100MM http://www.otpp.com/investments/essentials/major-investments [otpp.com] )

Perhaps you are thinking of the failed attempt to take them public years ago?
PS: I'm an "owner" of BCE as I've held a position for many years.
Nice conspiracy theory, next time spend a minute or two to validate.

Re:Bell Canada is owned by the Teachers Pension Fu (1)

dk20 (914954) | about 10 months ago | (#45207607)

My bad, "take them private..."
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