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Saturday, February 4, 2023

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New Pugwash Library Opens on Monday

New Pugwash Library Opens on Monday

New Pugwash Library Opens on Monday

New Pugwash Library Opens on Monday

The new $2.198-million Pugwash Library will open its doors to the public on Monday.
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MLA/Minister to Address Wentworth Concerns

MLA/Minister to Address Wentworth...

MLA/Minister to Address Wentworth Concerns

MLA/Minister to Address Wentworth Concerns

The Protect Wentworth Valley Committee (PWV) will host another public meeting next weekend to press their concerns about the proposed mega wind project for Higgins Mountain.
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Shubenacadie Sam: Go Back to Bed

Shubenacadie Sam: Go Back to Bed

Shubenacadie Sam: Go Back to Bed

Shubenacadie Sam: Go Back to Bed

Shubenacadie Sam says go back to bed for six more weeks of winter.
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Miners Suffer Critical Home Loss

Miners Suffer Critical Home Loss

Miners Suffer Critical Home Loss

Miners Suffer Critical Home Loss

The Springhill Coal Miners dropped an important game before a home crowd on Saturday, as the visiting River Valley Lumberjacks skated to a 4-2 win.
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Shots Fired in Springhill Apartment

Shots Fired in Springhill Apartment

Shots Fired in Springhill Apartment

Shots Fired in Springhill Apartment

The RCMP responded to shots fired within a Springhill apartment on Saturday.
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Town and County Join in Garbage Biz

Town and County Join in Garbage Biz

Town and County Join in Garbage Biz

Town and County Join in Garbage Biz

Big changes to garbage collection in Cumberland County are set for next year.
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Province Funds Local Doctor Search

Province Funds Local Doctor Search

Province Funds Local Doctor Search

Province Funds Local Doctor Search

The provincial government is providing funding to help community organizations recruit and retain healthcare professionals, to the tune of just over $175 thousand dollars in Cumberland County, with Pugwash receiving $25 thousand and change. 
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Catastrophe Awaits on Chignecto Isthmus

Catastrophe Awaits on Chignecto Isthmus

Catastrophe Awaits on Chignecto Isthmus

Catastrophe Awaits on Chignecto Isthmus

Local officials are concerned that senior governments are not moving quickly enough to ward off a catastrophe that is waiting to happen on the Isthmus of Chignecto.
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Bill Martin
/ Categories: Editorial

The Information Cow Path

Six Rivers Editorial

We live in the ‘Information Age’ and while most of the world is thriving on the information highway, rural communities are struggling to compete.


The preferred route on the information highway is by high speed. In fact, preferred is no longer the right word. Required, needed, mandatory are far better words to describe today’s need for gathering and sending information.


Like our highway system, the internet depends on inter-connecting pathways. Our roads have super highways, secondary highways, paved roads, gravel roads, and dirt paths. Our internet delivery system looks much the same, with fibre optic, high speed, variable satellite, and good old-fashioned dial-up.


While not everybody needs a super highway at the front door, to be fair and just, everybody does need the fastest possible internet. We don’t need to go to Moncton or Halifax everyday, so our secondary roads suit us just fine for local travel. But when it comes to the internet, we need to reach the far corners of the world every day, and it is becoming more crucial.


Some may think that silly. Perhaps those in business have such need to compete, but surely I can’t mean those people who play or Facebook on the internet. But yes, I do mean those people. Gamers need speed and even those whose pastimes involve social media face ever demanding speed as platforms add video and more sophisticated apps that require bandwidth.


If the internet is to be truly democratizing, then we all need equal access to speed. We cannot empower the larger centres with fibre optic while holding back our rural communities on a cow path.


Today’s economy allows people to work from home, provided they have appropriate internet access. People can operate international businesses from small communities, as long as they can communicate in a timely fashion. Computer engineers can create and collaborate from almost anywhere, but only with optimum internet.


Our current internet distribution system not only favours large communities, it is sounding the death knell to our smallest. We have watched our rural communities shrink in favour of the cities, and the unequal distribution of internet access is hastening that exodus.


Many brilliant minds are currently operating growing businesses from one man shops and collaborative enterprises, but they congregate in cities where speed is available. The nature of business today cannot be sustained on a digital subscriber line (DSL), let alone dial-up.


For most of rural Nova Scotia, the best we can look forward to is DSL or some form of satellite offering which sends at one speed and receives at another, not to mention that it begins to fail when the weather is bad. Our competition, meanwhile is light years ahead on “Fibe”.


Take my personal experience. Because of where I live, I had but one choice, the Pugwash River Mutual Telephone Company. Bet you never heard of it. My phone company, the last privately owned telecom in Canada, has exclusive rights for a small area along the Pugwash River. It has a handful of subscribers and depends on a link to the Bell network to provide its service.


It took three weeks to get phone service while the lone employee was busy with his blueberries. It took more time to adjust my internet because I mistakenly called Bell, the actual internet provider, who could not find me in their system. Eventually they concluded I was not their customer, and referred the matter to the  Pugwash River telco. Again the man had to leave his blueberry harvester to make a service call.


As cute as it is to be part of the last true phone pioneers and have my near neighbour as my phone man, in this day and age of high speed communications, it does not wash. 


Today’s ‘exclusive markets’ are the design of the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). When originally set-up, the commission was to be the watchdog for the public in a high tech industry that few might understand. Over the years, the CRTC became protector to the telecom companies. Under their watch, Bell Canada, Rogers, and the cable TV companies became wealthy and powerful. Even after some deregulation, the CRTC stood watch over the growth of new telephone companies, which also have become wealthy. It is easy to see that Canadians have been fleeced while Bell and Rogers in particular have amassed media control the likes of which our country had never seen.


It is time that the CRTC stopped protecting the powerfully wealthy, corporate suppliers and began protecting the public consumers in the way the commission was intended. Stop the pretence of competition. Stop the gouging. Start regulating in the best interest of the consumer, or get out of the way and open the telecommunications market to free choice and true competition.


Above all, treat rural Canadians the same as our urban cousins. We may choose to live off the beaten path when it comes to paved highways, but we deserve equal access to the information highway.

 

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Bill Kempt

My understanding is that the super fibre optic high way through our community already exists but the interchange is an undersize bottle neck . The laws of supply and demand and of profits alone are such that rural Canadians will always be underserved as companies providing any service will always compete for the greatest share of the largest market. Only fair regulatory government policies can guarantee any rural service at all.

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Radio This Week

Event List
Tuesday, January 3, 2023 12:00 AM

Listen to Morning Talk Replay. Click HERE to listen to recent interviews from our archive.

Saturday, February 4, 2023 8:00 PM

Saturday Night in a Harbour Town, featuring traditional East Coast music, airs every Saturday at 8 pm on Six Rivers All Hit Radio and Six Rivers Country.

Sunday, February 5, 2023 9:00 AM

Sunday Wrap, the week in review, is aired on the Six Rivers Radio Network every Sunday morning. Listen at 9:00.

Sunday, February 5, 2023 2:00 PM

A special replay of Saturday Night in a Harbour Town with host Eric MacEwen is heard every Sunday at 2 pm on Six Rivers All Hit Music and Six Rivers Country.

Tuesday, February 7, 2023 9:45 AM

Dr. Stephen Ellis, Member of Parliament for Cumberland-Colchester will be on Morning Talk every second Tuesday. Listen at 9:45.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 9:05 AM

Tory Rushton, Minister of Natural Resources, is on Morning Talk each Wednesday at 9:05.

Thursday, February 9, 2023 9:05 AM

Murray Scott, Mayor of Cumberland County, is on Morning Talk every Thursday. Listen at 9:05.

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Events This Week

Saturday, February 4, 2023 10:00 AM

Pickle Ball is played every Saturday from 10 am to noon at the Wentworth Recreation Centre.

Sunday, February 5, 2023 2:00 PM

Hope Centre Online is a worship service every Sunday at 2:15 pm. Click HERE to join on Zoom. The room opens at 2 pm.

Sunday, February 5, 2023 3:00 PM

Yoga is held every Sunday at 3 pm at the Wentworth Recreation Centre.

Monday, February 6, 2023 10:00 AM

Pickle Ball is played every Monday from 10 am to noon at the Wentworth Recreation Centre.

Tuesday, February 7, 2023 1:00 PM

Walk and Talk is held every Tuesday at 1 pm at the Wentworth Recreation Centre.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 10:00 AM

Pickle Ball is played every Wednesday from 10 am to noon at the Wentworth Recreation Centre.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 11:00 AM

The Pugwash Fire Department will host a COVID Vaccine Drop-in Clinic from 11 am to 2 pm for those 5 years and over. No appointment necessary.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 6:00 PM

Pugwash Fire Department Toonie Draw, the 50/50 community fundraiser. Click HERE for details.

Thursday, February 9, 2023 11:00 AM

The Wallace Community Centre will host a COVID Vaccine Drop-in Clinic from 11 am to 2 pm for those aged 5 and over. No appointment is necessary.

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