About a month ago, Bell made it clear that it wasn’t happy with Rogers’ exclusive control of its GamePlus app. It’s what prompted Rogers CEO Guy Laurence to refer to Bell as a ‘crybaby‘. Now, TELUS is standing up in support of Bell with a CRTC filing of its own.
The Globe and Mail cites a CRTC filing submitted by TELUS last week that calls the exclusive nature of Rogers’ GamePlus a story of “foreclosure of competition.”
The company goes on to cite Rogers’ statements during the 2011 dispute over Bell’s NFL programming rights. At that time, Rogers’ Phil Lind said that no one should have to subscribe to multiple providers in order to access their desired content. Rogers, TELUS says, is holding customers hostage with its NHL goodies.
In its original complaint, Bell alleged GamePlus was a contravention of CRTC regulations because it provided ‘preferential offering’ of NHL content to Rogers customers.
The CRTC’s Exemption Order for Digital Media Broadcasting Undertakings states that a service can’t offer TV programming ‘on an exclusive or otherwise preferential basis’ in a way that is dependent on a specific mobile or retail internet service.
Rogers has said that because the content is online-only, it falls outside the realm of what is considered “traditional TV programming.” A rep called the additional angles offered by GamePlus ‘innovative’ because users can customize their experience.
As per Bell’s complaint, Rogers has until November 20th, this Thursday, to respond. After which, Bell will be offered 10 days for a response. The CRTC will then issue a decision on whether or not Rogers is in breach of regulation.
[source]The Globe and Mail, MobileSyrup[/source]