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Ottawa, 2 June 2010


Mr. François D. Ramsay
Senior vice President,General
Counsel and SecretaryYellow Pages Group
16 Place du Commerce
Verdun, Québec
H3E 2A5

Dear Mr. Ramsay:

Re: Distribution of residential telephone directory listings

On 21 April 2010, Yellow Pages Group (YPG) informed the Commission of its intent to modify the distribution policy for residential telephone directory listings (the white pages) in various forborne urban centres in Canada[1]) such that distribution would only take place under an “on-demand” approach.

YPG indicated that under the “on-demand” approach, mass distribution of white pages would no longer be provided.  Customers could request a copy of the current version of a residential directory for their city free of charge, at any time, by calling YPG client services or by making a request on-line. YPG noted that its policy to mass distribute annually business telephone directory listings (the yellow pages) would remain unchanged. 

YPG noted that during the years of the biennial residential directory distribution, which began in 2006 in several major cities in Canada, less than 2% of customers requested a copy of the white pages in the years of non-distribution.  YPG further noted that its proposed “on-demand” directory distribution policy was consistent with trends in other countries such as the United States.

YPG indicated that important information currently contained in the white pages, such as individual business listings and the government listings as well as emergency contact numbers and Commission mandated information requirements,[2]  would be updated and distributed annually in the yellow pages to all residential subscribers.

YPG proposed to adopt a comprehensive communication plan in order to notify customers of the new “on-demand” distribution plan, which would include general and market specific press releases announcing the implementation dates for each city, and the means by which customers could request a free copy of the white pages.  In addition, the yellow pages directory would include several notices on how to obtain a free copy of the current white pages directory, including on the cover, spine and various pages in the yellow pages directory.

By way of a letter dated 4 May 2010, the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) expressed several concerns regarding the effects that YPG’s new directory distribution policy would have on consumers, including the reliability of important information found in the white pages and the fact that it would place the burden on consumers to request a copy of the white pages directory.  PIAC requested that the Commission initiate a public proceeding to consider various issues related to directory distribution.  Otherwise, the Commission should consider rate reductions to compensate for the service reduction.

Commission staff notes that in Telecom Decision 2006-15,[3] the Commission maintained the entitlement of residential customers in forborne markets to receive copies of the white and yellow page directories, free of charge.  Commission staff considers that YPG’s implementation plan for its proposed “on-demand” directory distribution policy will continue this entitlement and will ensure that residential customers in forborne markets continue to be able to receive copies of the white and yellow page directories as required by Telecom Decision 2006-15.

Accordingly, Commission staff considers that YPG’s “on-demand” distribution policy for white pages is consistent with Commission directives in forborne markets and that a public proceeding, as requested by PIAC, is not necessary.


Original signed by:

John Traversy
Executive Director, Telecommunications

cc:   John Lawford,
Ted Woodhead,
Mirko Bibic, Bell Canada,

[1] Montréal, Québec City, Ottawa, Toronto,  Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver

[2] Telecom Regulatory Policy CRTC 2009-156, Revised regulatory requirements to provide information to customers, 24 March 2009

[3] Forbearance from the regulation of retail local exchange services , Telecom Decision CRTC 2006-15, 6 April 2006, as modified pursuant to the Order Varying Telecom Decision CRTC 2006-15, P.C. 2007-532.

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