Telecom Commission Letter addressed to Mr. Simon-Pierre Olivier (Rogers Communications Canada Inc.)
Ottawa, 7 April 2020
Our reference: 8662-R28-201911694
Mr. Simon-Pierre Olivier
Director, Regulatory Affairs
Rogers Communications Canada Inc.
One Mount Pleasant Road, 10th Floor
Toronto, Ontario M4Y 2Y5
RE: Internet Code implementation – Rogers Communications Canada Inc.’s Part 1 application for an extension of time for certain rules
This letter sets out the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s determinations on Rogers Communications Canada Inc.’s (RCCI) Part 1 application seeking an extension of time to implement certain requirements of the Internet Code (the Code), set out in The Internet Code, Telecom Regulatory Policy CRTC 2019‑269, 31 July 2019 (the Internet Code Policy).
In its application, filed on 21 November 2019, RCCI stated that it and its affiliate brand, Fido Internet (Fido), were unable to comply with the rules set out in the following sections of the Code by the 31 January 2020 deadline:
- C.1. (Critical Information Summary [CIS]),
- E.1.i. (Bill management – Usage Limit – Notice at 90% data usage), and
- I.2.ii. and iii. (Disconnection – Notice before disconnection related to failure to pay).
For this reason, the company requested an extension to 30 April 2020 to implement these rules. RCCI stated that all other Code rules would be implemented by the 31 January 2020 deadline.
The application was posted to the Commission’s website on 25 November 2019. No interventions were filed.
Pursuant to the Internet Code Policy, an Internet service provider (ISP) may submit a Part 1 application to seek an extension of the deadline to implement certain rules of the Code. To obtain an extension, the ISP must demonstrate that it faces unique barriers that would make implementing the specific rule(s) of the Code technically impossible or financially unreasonable. RCCI submitted that it faces unique barriers making implementation of the affected rules by 31 January 2020 technically impossible.
Specifically, RCCI submitted the following:
- For rule C.1, all IT programming code development work will be frozen during January and February 2020 due to a major modernization project of RCCI’s IT system. The Fido brand does not currently provide a CIS document for its wireline Internet service customers, so the creation of a unique CIS for Fido requires a significant IT development build. For the Rogers brand, RCCI will put in place a manual process for customer service representatives to ensure that they send the CIS to customers at the same time that a contract is sent, until an automated solution can be developed and implemented. However, if customers self-serve online, they will have the choice to receive the CIS with their contract until the automated solution is implemented.
- For rule E.1.i., Rogers and Fido currently notify customers at the required 75% and 100% usage limits and require IT changes to also notify customers at the 90% limit. In its reply, RCCI stated that it has been able to accelerate the IT work required to implement the 90% notification for customers of its legacy Internet service from the Rogers brand. RCCI anticipated that the only gap in the 90% notification will be for Fido Internet customers who are on data limited plans.
- For rules I.2.ii. and iii., IT development work is required for Rogers and Fido to comply with these rules. RCCI’s current processes already provide notifications to customers before disconnection or suspension, and it currently complies with rule I.1., which describes the grounds for disconnection, when a disconnection can occur, and what occurs when a disconnection happens in error.
The Commission finds that RCCI’s application meets the test for an extension set out in the Internet Code Policy, since it effectively demonstrates that the company faces unique barriers (i.e. the IT development freeze) that would make implementing rules C.1., E.1.i., and I.2.ii. and iii. of the Code (hereafter, the affected rules) before 30 April 2020 technically impossible. In particular, the Commission is satisfied that RCCI’s available IT release windows, which are planned up to a year in advance and include the IT development freeze, constitute a unique barrier that makes it technically impossible to implement the affected rules by 31 January 2020. The Commission also considers that granting RCCI’s request will have a limited impact on customers, in that it will affect a limited number of customers and for a relatively short duration.
Accordingly, the Commission approves RCCI’s request to extend the implementation deadline from 31 January 2020 to 30 April 2020 for the affected rules. The Commission encourages RCCI to further accelerate the implementation of its new system in order to comply with the affected rules as soon as possible.
The Commission reminds RCCI of the following:
- It remains obligated to meet all other Code rules as of 31 January 2020.
- It remains obligated to submit its annual Code compliance report, due by 31 August each year. The Commission will take its determinations in this decision into consideration when assessing the company’s overall compliance with implementing the Code. When assessing the company’s 2020 compliance report, the Commission will assess RCCI’s compliance with all other Code rules.
- The Commission for Complaints for Telecom-Television Services (CCTS) will address complaints regarding all Code rules, including those at issue in the present letter, in a manner consistent with the Code for all customers, including RCCI’s customers. Therefore, despite the Commission’s approval of the extension, for complaints that the CCTS receives regarding the affected rules, the CCTS will continue to interpret and resolve matters in a manner consistent with the Code.
The Commission directs RCCI to file a report within 30 days of implementing all aspects of the Code in full. This report should address any complaints received about the affected rules prior to their implementation.
The Commission intends to monitor consumer complaints to the CCTS for any systemic issues arising from the delay in implementing the Code.
(Original signed by)
C.C: Nanao Kachi, CRTC, 819-997-4700, Nanao.Kachi@crtc.gc.ca;
Tara Levine, CRTC, 819-997-4478, Tara.Levine@crtc.gc.ca;
Commission for Complaints for Telecom-television Services,
email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com.
- Date modified: