Internet: basic service?

This week, the thinkers over at the Senate called the Internet a basic service and decided that the government needs to do more to make sure all Canadians have access to reliable and speedy Internet services.

That’s a pretty huge statement. 

One of the challenges of life in the north is our not-so-great internet.  Its expensive, its slow, sometimes it doesn’t work… not exactly the recipe for making us a technology-based powerhouse.

Developing fast Internet connections seems like a golden ticket to an improved degree of economic prosperity for the territory – both in terms of improved educational opportunities (distance education) and small business options.  

Improved Internet will also make it easier to deliver consistent services and offer similar access to resources throughout Nunavut.

Its amazing that we live in a country where our Senate is discussing Internet rather than access to food or clean water.  On the other hand, its hard to take when some of what I would argue are more basic services, such as running water and fresh, healthy foods aren’t equally available throughout the country. 

Ever the optimist, its great news that Internet might get more accessible. I just hope its not one of the basic services that some people get more than others.  When everyone has Internet, not having it is just another barrier to equality and equal opportunity.