Broadcasting Commission Letter addressed to Jonathan Daniels (Bell Canada)
Ottawa, 31 October 2022
Our reference: 2017-138
Vice President, Regulatory Law
Re: Request for Information regarding availability of Described Video on Video-on- Demand Services – Request to disclose information designated as confidential
Commission staff acknowledges receipt of the correspondence provided by Bell Canada (Bell) dated 13 September 2022 in response to Broadcasting - Commission Letter addressed to the Distribution List regarding the availability of Described Video on Video-on-Demand Services.
With this letter, Commission staff is requesting disclosure of the following documents submitted in confidence by Bell:
- Appendix A (English-language programs) to Question 1 - Is DV available on your traditional VOD platform(s)? If yes, how many titles and hours of DV are available on these platforms over broadcast year 2021-2022? Provide these data in the table templates set out in Appendix A.
- Appendix A (English-language programs) to Question 2 - Is DV available on your over-the-top (digital media broadcasting) VOD platforms (if applicable)? If yes, how many titles and hours of DV are available on these platforms over broadcast year 2021-2022? Provide these data in the table templates set out in Appendix A.
- Bell’s response to Questions 3(a) - If there are technical limitations, provide a detailed explanation of what those are and what actions are being undertaken to address these technical limitations.
At the time that Bell filed its response, it designated the above information as ‘confidential’ pursuant to section 39 of the Telecommunications Act and the Appendix to Broadcasting and Telecom Information Bulletin CRTC 2010-961, Procedures for filing confidential information and requesting its disclosure in Commission proceedings, dated 23 December 2010, as amended in Broadcasting and Telecom Information Bulletin CRTC 2010-961-1, dated 26 October 2012, and in the request for information. Bell provided the following rationale for its designation of confidentiality for this information in its letter dated 13 September 2022:
“We are submitting certain information contained in this response in confidence. In particular, the information that we have provided in confidence represents information about our video-on-demand (VOD) programming assets, which is an integral part of our video distribution and broadcasting services. The aggregate number and type of video assets our services contain is confidential information. Release of this information on the public record would provide existing or potential competitors with invaluable competitively-sensitive information that would not otherwise be available to them, and which would enable them to develop more effective business strategies. Release of such information could prejudice our competitive position resulting in material financial loss and cause specific direct harm. Abridged versions of this response are provided for the public record.”
Commission staff is of the view that Bell has not provided sufficiently specific rationale to justify that disclosure of this information would be likely to result in specific direct harm and that this harm outweighs the public interest in disclosure, nor did it explain how the information at issue meets the criteria listed in the Appendices to Information Bulletin 2010-961. Commission staff further notes that the information requested in Appendix A is information that has always been disclosed on the Commission’s web site as part of data collection pursuant to Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2011-59-1. Also the requested information was submitted publicly by other service providers without a designation of confidentiality. For these reasons, Commission staff considers that the information in Appendix A is not confidential and that release of this information and the response to Question 3(a) is in the public interest.
Accordingly, Bell is to submit a non-abridged version of Appendix A to Question 1, Appendix A to Question 2, and its response to Question 3(a), or re-file to the Commission a complete rationale for confidentiality no later than 7 November 2022.
All documents filed in response to this request are to be submitted in a file format that is accessible by someone who is blind or partially sighted who may benefit from a file format that allows for text to be enlarged or modified or read by screen readers (for example, in MSWord, not pdf). Please refer to Creating Accessible Documents that is available on the CRTC’s website.
When submitting documents, use the following naming convention: “Company Name – Report – Described Video – Brand name (if applicable) – Title of document (i.e. cover letter, appendix) if multiple documents are filed – FR/EN – Abridged/Confidential (if applicable) – YYYY-MM-DD”.
Original signed by
Social and Consumer Policy
Consumer Affairs and Strategic Policy
c.c.: Meghan Zwiers, Meghan.Zwiers@crtc.gc.ca
Paula Jaramillo Palacio, Paula.JaramilloPalacio@crtc.gc.ca
- Date modified: