#CyberFLASH: Canadians may soon compete on Jeopardy

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 21: Alex Trebek speaks during a rehearsal before a taping of  Jeopardy! Power Players Week at DAR Constitution Hall on April 21, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images)

OTTAWA (CP) — Game show host Alex Trebek says it looks as if Canadians will soon be able to apply to compete on Jeopardy again.

Trebek, who has presided over the quiz show for more than 30 years, is in Ottawa to receive the key to the city and met Prime Minister Justin Trudeau briefly.

The prime minister has praised Trebek’s financial contributions to the University of Ottawa.

The two also discussed a return of Canadians to Trebek’s popular show.

Changes in Canada’s digital privacy laws last year caused problems over Internet applications, but Trebek says they are being ironed out.

Trudeau suggested the host had worked out a fix for the problem.

“I’m sure you’ve been grilled on that,” Trudeau said.

“Well yes, because everyone blames us and I keep turning it around and saying …”

Trudeau interrupted: “You’re blaming me instead.”

“Well not quite,” Trebek said, adding that he has been told a solution is in the works.

The show’s website says it cannot accept registration information from Canadians but “we are currently evaluating this matter.”

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#CyberFLASH: Trudeau must defend cyberspace: PM’s advisers

CPT101318547_ContentOTTAWA — Defending and advancing a free, open and secure cyberspace is essential to Canada’s prosperity as well as its commitment to human rights and democracy, advisers have told Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The next several years will bring steady progress in the development of international frameworks for the digital realm, including Internet norms, agreements and governance arrangements, says a briefing note presented to Trudeau when he took office in November.

Repressive regimes want to harness communication networks to silence criticism, control information and limit access — threatening to undermine the open and connected nature of the Internet, warns the note obtained by The Canadian Press under the Access to Information Act.

“There is a window in which Canada, drawing on its diplomatic strengths, could help preserve the openness, resiliency and security of cyberspace on which Canadians and people across the globe have come to rely.”

The note stresses the role of the Internet — with three billion users, and another billion expected by 2017 — in driving economic growth and creating opportunities for social and democratic progress.

Canada is working closely with its Five Eyes partners — Britain, the United States, Australia and New Zealand — as well as Sweden, France, Germany, the Netherlands, the European Union and Mexico to sway emerging powers and other developing countries that have yet to take a firm stance on cyberspace issues, the note says.

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#CyberFLASH: Privacy, telecom competition among Trudeau’s tech policy priorities

geist.jpg.size.xxlarge.letterboxDigital policies may not have played a significant role in the just-concluded national election, but the arrival of a majority Liberal government will leave many expecting “real change” on the digital front in the years ahead.

Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau is likely to focus on key economic promises from his platform once Parliament resumes. However, there will be several digital issues that should command attention during his first 12 months in office.

Bill C-51

The Liberals voted for the controversial anti-terror law, but the party promised changes to it if elected.

In particular, it pledged to establish an all-party review mechanism similar to those found in many other countries that will bring Members of Parliament into the oversight process. Moreover, the Liberals promised to increase the powers of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada and add a mandatory three-year review provision to the law, suggesting that the current government may both start and end its term in office with reviews of the anti-terror legislation.

While Bill C-51 has been Canada’s hot button privacy issue since its introduction last January, the new government will also have a chance to quickly put its stamp on other privacy issues. This could include issuing a strong endorsement of the Supreme Court of Canada’s Spencer decision on the reasonable expectation of privacy in Internet subscriber information by committing to stopping warrantless access to such data.

The Trans Pacific Partnership

The TPP emerged as an election issue late in the campaign after the 12 member countries reached an agreement-in-principle on a deal that could have a major impact on the Canadian economy. The TPP involves far more than just the elimination of tariff barriers, since it requires reforms such as an extension in the term of copyright, new Internet takedown requirements, and restrictions on domestic privacy protections.

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#CyberFLASH: Justin Trudeau proposes more access to government data

Justin Trudeau

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau is proposing an overhaul of the much-maligned federal access to information law that would include making government information “open by default.”

The move comes days after Canada’s information commissioner raised concerns about growing secrecy within federal government departments and agencies, and is the latest among Trudeau’s promises to push for more openness and transparency.

Speaking Wednesday as he prepared to table a private member’s bill calling for an update to the 30-year-old Access to Information Act, Trudeau argued the importance of making government information readily available to all Canadians.

“The ability of a citizen to access information on what government is doing with their tax dollars, in their name, is one of the fundamental tenets of building confidence around government,” he said.

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