Mother always taught us kids not to gloat when one of our little playmates got in trouble. It is hard not to gloat though when a company such as Rogers proves you where right. The company’s overreach is a classic and the timing for a failure could not have been better. Watching the smugness of the Rogers scion and the Shaw people at the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) hearings at the beginning of the government’s review of the Rogers’ acquisition of Shaw, was almost more than the stomach could survive.
I will never forget the time the wife and I were moving from our condominium to our present apartment. Before moving I called Rogers to give the company a move date and to check on costs of transferring our service. I just about fell out of my chair when I was told that the combined Internet, television and telephone service would cost over $190 a month. That was almost double what we had been paying for Rogers service at the condominium.
I could not believe the arrogance in the answer, when I asked “Why?” He explained that Rogers controlled the key to the communications closet in the building. Since he obviously did not know that Bell Fibe was about to be introduced in the area, I, reluctantly, gave our business to Bell.
It probably made sense, that when the late Ted Rogers built his empire, he had complete control. He was daring, he pioneered, he was an entrepreneur and he was adept at working with people. He took great risks and earned the rewards.
But the son is not the father. For Ted’s son to have the degree of control of the company his father built seems to me to have been a mistake. It is a complicated company with millions of people dependent on the services it provides. And it is part of a triumvirate of companies—Rogers, Bell and Telus—that virtually control telecommunications in Canada.
It shows that the CRTC is woefully incompetent and in trouble. It is no longer serving its purpose. It took politician, François-Philippe Champagne, minister of science and industry to take the telecommunications companies to the woodshed for their lack of back-up and connectivity. Whether it will help, we shall see.
Copyright 2022 © Peter Lowry
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