Newspaper article The Canadian Press

CRTC Reminds Telecoms They Must Promote Basic TV Packages to Customers

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

CRTC Reminds Telecoms They Must Promote Basic TV Packages to Customers

Article excerpt

Telecoms must promote basic TV packages: CRTC

--

TORONTO - In less than two weeks, Canada's TV-service providers must all start offering so-called pick and pay cable service. But, so far, most have been mum on what those new packages will look like, much to the disappointment of the country's broadcast regulator.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission issued an information bulletin Wednesday to remind the telecoms that they must promote this service in some way to consumers by March 1, said CRTC chairman Jean-Pierre Blais.

"(It) was a shot across the bow," he said in an interview.

Under the deadline set by the CRTC, all Canadian TV providers must offer a basic package of channels -- priced $25 or less a month -- and either a la carte channel selection or small bundles of channels. By December, these companies must offer all three options.

The new CRTC regulations arose from consultations with Canadians about TV choice and affordability.

But so far few of the telecoms have announced what their basic packages will include.

VMedia announced its skinny package in June with 28 channels for less than $18 a month. Shaw (TSX:SJR.B) now offers a $25 limited-TV package with 40 channels.

So far, none of the other major TV providers -- Bell (TSX:BCE), Telus (TSX:T) or Rogers (TSX:RCI.B) -- have listed basic cable plans priced at $25 or less online.

Blais said he doesn't want to presume bad faith. The companies are likely lining up their offers or watching to see what moves their competitors make, he said.

The companies are not required to announce their packages until March 1st.

Bell's online offerings will be updated by Feb 21, an online customer service representative said.

A Rogers customer service representative said the company will advertise its lineup shortly before the deadline, while representatives of Telus did not immediately respond to a query on the issue. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.