New Brunswick — In a move meant to keep their poorest customer base bent snugly over a barrel, Bell and Rogers have announced that starting October 2015, their customers in New Brunswick will incur surcharges for using Internet services before, during and following a blizzard.
The policy change is just another example of big corporations doing everything they can to please their shareholders, maximize profits and alienate their customer base. Surely, Canada’s biggest ISP’s are aware that people have to stay indoors during storms and they’re betting on the fact that they’re all going to be using their services while snowed in. Why not cash in on this trend? Some people would call it Machiavellian opportunism, if more people knew what that meant.
Our reporter walked down the road from The Manatee’s office this morning aiming to interrupt a shoveller for comment. “What? I don’t have time for this!” stated the unwilling interview participant. “I’m late for work. Are you going to push or just shove your recorder in my face?”
This issue clearly has New Brunswickers all riled up, but just to be sure our reporter decided to ask a mother who was struggling to get her stroller up off the road without tipping it. When he asked her what she thought of the recent policy change, she said: “Are you f*cking kidding me?”
New Brunswickers are now paying more for Internet and cellular services than any other province in the country. Residents are demanding answers, and luckily they have The Manatee to ask the hard questions.
Our reporting staff attempted to reach Bell to ask them how they could sleep at night, but they were too busy planning next year’s “Let’s Talk” campaign to comment. We then contacted Rogers and to our surprise, things started to clear up. As we suspected, bandwidth had something to do with it, but it’s not because of Netflix, YouTube or any other favourite time-wasters.
“Here’s the thing with New Brunswick,” said Patricia Trott, director of public affairs for Rogers Communications. “They have one of the smallest populations in the country, but during storms they use up 75 percent of the country’s bandwidth. We looked at the data and it’s not because they’re streaming video, it’s actually because they’re complaining about the weather.”
A little research shows that the typical New Brunswicker complains on social media on average 4 times before a storm. When you add that to the 5 posts of desperate boredom they share on storm day and then to the 3 “Look at how much f*cking snow is in my driveway” pictures they share post-storm, you can’t help but understand that Canada’s ISP’s have no choice but to hike prices.