Québec Told Blocking Online Gambling WebSites Unconstitutional.

Published Wednesday, July 25, 2018 - Online-Casinos.com
Québec Told Blocking Online Gambling WebSites Unconstitutional.

The blocking of internet web sites has become an issue for many regulators trying to curb the influence of offshore online gambling operators on consumers looking to gamble for real money. The influence of non licenced internet betting operators has taken the government in the province of Québec Canada to try to stop the interloping operators by interrupting the process by demanding internet service providers block online gambling web locations.

After a long drawn out battle in the courts the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) has been found correct by the Québec Superior Court that blocking access to online gambling websites is unconstitutional.

The argument has been settled over a CWTA challenge that Bill 74 passed by the Quebec legislature in 2016 requiring ISPs to deny Québec citizens access to particular websites was not within the rule of law in Canada.

It was determined by the courts that only the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), rather than the province, has the proper jurisdiction over such matters.

Justice Pierre Nollet  said that the Bill was designed to “prevent gaming websites not exploited by the government from being accessible” and was “not about protecting consumers or their health.” Under the existing Canadian Telecommunications Act, carriers “shall not control the content or influence the meaning or purpose of telecommunications carried by it for the public”, unless the CRTC intervenes. The CRTC itself said that it only grants permissions to block websites “in exceptional circumstances”.

CWTA’s manager of government relations, Tiéoulé Traoré, commented, “We have always been clear that Canadians are better served by a proportionate and symmetrical set of federal regulations than a patchwork of provincial regulations,” Traoré, added, “This decision is important as we feel it will help send a strong message of regulatory certainty and increase the incentives for facilities-based investment in Québec and elsewhere in Canada.”

 

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