Aug 21, 2013
I think that there’s something perversely poignant about Bell appealing to its Canadian consumers to go to bat for it with the CRTC. But, maybe I’m missing something. As I understand it, the CRTC is ready to grant Verizon the right to compete with Bell, Rogers and Telus for our mobile phone business. The Canadian companies are objecting. They feel that the CRTC is tilting the playing field in favour of an American mega-company.
In a sense, this multi-media advertorial campaign by Bell and by Rogers is a referendum on their brands. Do we care about them enough to support them against the threat of a foreign invader?
Both Bell and Rogers began as monopolies. The government granted them exclusivity and they both grew fat and happy. They thrived because consumers didn’t have a choice. And even after de-regulation of their markets, these are companies that have chosen to go for immediate profit rather than long term relationships. They have milked the Canadian cow for every dime they could squeeze out of it, and now, sorry for the mixed agricultural metaphor, the chickens have come home to roost. Bell and Rogers are turning to their customers for help and we are not coming to their rescue.
Is it because these are brands that don’t offer globally competitive pricing? Is it because the entire Canadian mobile phone marketplace is based on confusing and confounding contracts? Or is it because these are brands that haven’t earned our trust, admiration or loyalty?
And, about the argument that Verizon won’t create jobs in Canada? The last time I called the Bell Sympatico help line, I spoke to a gentleman overseas. You haven’t listened to me as your consumer, Bell and Rogers. Why should I come to your rescue with the CRTC?
Can you hear me now?