Broadcasting Procedural Letter Addressed to Alysia Lau (Public Interest Advocacy Centre)

Ottawa, 13 June 2016

By email: alau@piac.ca

Ms. Alysia Lau
Legal Counsel
Public Interest Advocacy Centre
One Nicholas Street, Suite 1204
Ottawa, Ontario
K1N 7B7

Re: Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2016-197 – Procedural request filed by the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) to add complaints to the public record of the proceeding

Dear Ms. Lau:

This is in response to the letter filed by the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), dated 6 June 2016, in regard to Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2016-197. In its letter, PIAC requested that the 587 complaints received at the Commission from Canadians regarding the implementation of the small basic service requirements on 1 March 2016, as reported in an article published on the CBC’s website on 17 March 2016, be added to the public record.

PIAC noted that the individual complaints have likely raised important issues that should be addressed as part of this proceeding and that publishing them on the record would increase the transparency of the process and allow parties to comment on the key consumer issues raised regarding the small basic service.

PIAC also noted that, where there are confidentiality concerns, it would not be opposed to the Commission disclosing aggregate information by category such as the types of issues raised, the number of complaints by broadcasting distribution undertaking, and the number of complaints by province.

The present letter is to inform you that PIAC’s request is granted in part. The Commission is adding, on the public record, aggregate information regarding the complaints, including the number of complaints by issue and by province, in the appendix to this letter. For greater transparency, and to reflect more up-to-date information, however, this information will include complaints received between 1 March 2016 (the effective date of the small basic service requirements) and 24 May 2016 (the publication date of the notice).

A copy of this letter and all related correspondence will be added to the public record of the proceeding.

Sincerely,

Original signed by Véronique Lehoux for

Danielle May-Cuconato
Secretary General

c.c. documents@myaccess.coop; licence@cogeco.com; regulatory.matters@corp.eastlink.ca; regulatory@mts.ca; cable.regulatory@rci.rogers.com; document.control@sasktel.com; dean.shaikh@sjrb.ca; regulatory.affairs@telus.com; reglementaires@quebecor.com; george.burger@vmedia.ca; rsocci@atoptv.com; accounts@ciphertv.com; regulatory@beanfield.com; bell.regulatory@bell.ca; josephbassili@colba.net; support@rangtel.com; regulatory@zazeen.com


APPENDIX 

Parlons télé : statistiques concernant la politique sur le choix
Key issues / Examples Number of complaints 1 March to 24 May 2016
Choice (unable to choose services on a pick-and-pay basis) 376
Price increase (loss of promotional bundles when subscribing to the small basic service) 350
Composition of the small basic service (which services must be included) 347
Equipment (the digital set-top box is not included with the subscription to the small basic service) 104
Affordability (cost of services too high for the average Canadian household, particularly for seniors) 87
Discretionary services (unable to select certain services when subscribing to the small basic service) 79
Quality of customer service (unable to subscribe in certain service providers’ stores; client services not well informed) 43
Promotion (lack of notification of availability of the small basic service) 16
Contracts (unable to switch to the small basic service because of an existing contract) 6
Compliance (questioning compliance of undertakings not offering services on a pick-and-pay basis) 5
Request for information (whether small basic service requirements apply to analog services) 5
Total 1,418
 
Province Number of complaints 1 March to 24 May 2016
Ontario 563
British Columbia 201
Alberta 169
Quebec 164
Nova Scotia 100
Manitoba 63
Unspecified 41
New Brunswick 40
Saskatchewan 32
Newfoundland and Labrador 27
Prince Edward Island 14
Yukon 2
Northwest Territories 2
Total 1,418
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