Canadian Internet companies including Bell, Shaw, Telus and Rogers have begun usage-based billing (UBB). This means there is a limit on how much data can be sent and received over the Internet and once this limit is hit you pay more for every gigabyte.
Many limits are set at 25 to 30 GB and the overages cost up to $4 per gigabyte.
Many people may think this limit is far from reachable for themselves, but this is not based only on what you download. If one family member watches 30 minutes of good quality YouTube videos each day that could put you over 25 gigabytes in a month.
The usage also applies to video chat with friends and relatives, except you would be sending and receiving video.
It is not a matter of the companies needing the money either. A gigabyte of information transmitted is estimated to cost the company less than a nickel. The companies are after pure profit to take advantage of people moving away from cable TV.
The UBB limits Canadians' access to information and harms small businesses in Canada that rely on the Internet.
And these days, who doesn't use the Internet?