Consumer Information

Upcoming Changes For Postal Imports From States

Negotiations in-between Canada and the United States has resulted in the doubling of the de minimis threshold to $40.

This means shipments valued under $40 dollars that originate from the states will not be subject to duties or taxes, with another provision calling for duties to be added only to shipments valued at above $150.

Additional details will be added to this entry asap.


Postal Strike Talks This Weekend

Canada Post and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers will be in meetings this weekend to avert a possible postal strike.

Postal Strike Imminent?

Several banking institutions and internet providers have issued warnings about the possibility of a postal strike. And online retailers like Amazon.ca, chapters.indigo.ca and Newegg.ca, are readying alternative shipping methods for their clients.

I believe all three retailers have a shipping option to deliver parcels to your local post office and some retailers also deliver to their stores. But many retailers have their own courier services so keep an eye on their sites and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers site for details.

Once You Know, You Newegg

Canada Post Strike?

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers have voted for job action if no agreements are reached by Sept. 26. I will keep an eye on the situation and will update this page asap.

Canada Post’s New Outlet Concept

Canada Post is now offering more secure options via their new outlet concept stores in Richmond (British Columbia), Edmonton (Alberta) and Vancouver (British Columbia).

These stores have drive-thru parcel pickup services, free wi-fi, changing rooms and vending machines that sell stamps, prepaid envelopes and anything you need to ship 24/7 – Great for anyone that wants to shop and ship at all hours of the night.

People who have issues with “porch bandits” can also use these new concept stores or the existing self-service options found at the Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal post offices listed on the Canada Post statement.

Free Shipping on Orders Over $25!

Another Cash Grab?

The Copyright Act is being reviewed by the Canadian Government and some Canadians are of course concerned that this will include an extension of private copying levies to cell phones and the possibility of websites being blocked for minor copyright violations.

Unfortunately the government has been pretty quiet about this since their December 17th, 2017 press release and I didn’t want to speculate. But a line in the sand needs to be drawn, regardless of what is and isn’t being considered in the closed door meetings they might be having with foreign lobbyists.

I don’t think cell phones should be subject to the private copying levy because streaming is the preferred method of obtaining music on this device according to Music Canada, some customers listening to radio on these devices. And the possibility of having my site blocked because I accidentally linked a site that decided to offer pirated music is just absurd but these kind of proposals have been made in other countries.

This isn’t about giving artists more of their dues but giving labels more money. And streaming is where the improvements are needed when it comes to royalties for artists, so I see no point in levying cell phone storage.

The Copyright Board proposed levying hard drives and microSD memory cards in 2014 but that propose was rejected because a “recording audio medium” is defined by Part VIII, Section 79 of the Copyright Act as “a recording medium, regardless of its material form, onto which a sound recording may be reproduced and that is of a kind ordinarily used by individual consumers for that purpose”.

A cell phone’s primary function is communication, not the receipt, storage and playback of music. And this device is also used to take and view photographs and videos.

It makes no sense to levy this device for royalties for music and nothing else. And this slippery slope is not advantageous for consumers, who would object to paying levies for storing photographs, video and games on their new smartphone, or tablet.

I don’t like being gouged on data fees so I don’t listen to music, watch videos or play video games on mine now. And I seriously doubt i’d enjoy paying more for a newer model, for services I wouldn’t use.

Do we really want to burden the cell phone industry with this? And when it comes to blocking, this can be bypassed with Virtual Private Network services, so is the government going to go after those as well in the name of copyright?

VPNs are used by people who travel and use public wi-fi, for security reasons. Do we really want to loose access to this service over piracy? When a sharp decline in music piracy was observed in 2017 by Music Canada?

A form has been made available by Open Media to provide comments to the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology on these issues.

Please submit this form and share this link and your opinions on social media before September 17th, 2018. Thank you.

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