Woodstock — Telecommunications giant Rogers admitted in a conference call with shareholders today that only 12 New Brunswick customers remain on its Hi-Speed Internet service.
“It pretty much tanked thanks to Bell’s Fibre-Op, our data caps, and the fact that people in that province just generally hate our guts for our terrible customer service,” Rogers CEO J. Danforth Daniels said during the call that focused mostly on how to make sure the fewest people possible across the country will be able to watch NHL games without signing up for Rogers TV.
“Oh, yeah, and don’t forget that Netflix really screwed us, too,” he said.
The Netflix streaming video service has been a thorn in the side of Canadian Internet Service Providers (ISPs) since offering low-cost on-demand TV shows and movies in this country 4 years ago. Sources say that Netflix is now more popular than online porn and is responsible for up to 70 percent of Internet traffic during what used to be known as TV’s prime time.
“It’s just not fair that our customers can watch movies and TV shows for 10 bucks a month from an American company instead of paying us 5 or 6 times as much. It’s just so un-Canadian,” an obviously frustrated Daniels said during the call. “But we’re rolling out our new service which is only $4.99 a month as long as you have a $120-per-month Super Hi-Speed Internet package.”
Only time will tell whether the new service will catch on, but one local media expert is skeptical.
“I gave up on them when they capped Netflix. None of the colour stuff would work anymore. I mean, who wants to watch the Internet in black and white? That’s so 1999,” said well-known Woodstock digital pundit Chas “The Chas” Chasborne. “This is 2014. We expect the blood to be red, the oceans to be blue and the grass to be greenish. But sure, I’ll try their new service. And $4.99 could be a real sweet spot, but I’m a little worried about their ability to sell the bundle with their Super Hi-Speed package.”
Rogers declined to identify their remaining New Brunswick customers, saying that would be a violation of their privacy and would likely to lead to abuse and general condemnation at the hands of their friends, family and neighbours.
“Nobody wanted to be the last person on that social networking site that Rupert Murdoch bought for a couple of hundred million dollars a few years ago. What was it called? MySpade? Anyway, it sucks being labelled as digitally clueless by your entire community,” Daniels said. “We’re even considering doing something about our annoying telephone support system, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. This is about people. Our people. They’re what make us great. And who can argue with that?”