Competition Bureau seeking $10 million fine against Rogers for false claims about competitors' network performance

by Liam Britten | Technology

The Competition Bureauis seeking a $10 million fine against Rogers for fraudulent advertising, after their ad campaigns depicted new wireless companies as having poor service.

From The Globe and Mail:

When Rogers launched a new discount brand called Chatr Wireless, the company began bragging in its marketing material and advertising that the service had “fewer dropped calls than new wireless carriers.” In interviews and on conference calls, Rogers executives frequently insulted the size and quality of the new competitors’ networks.

The bureau said that based on “an extensive review of technical data, obtained from a number of sources,” that there was “no discernible difference in dropped call rates between Rogers/Chatr and new entrants.”

“We take misleading advertising very seriously,” Melanie Aitken, the commissioner of competition, said in a release. “Consumers deserve accurate information when making purchasing decisions and need to have confidence they are not being misled by false advertising campaigns.”

The Competition Bureau, which is not a court of law and cannot force Rogers to pay the fine, is taking the telecom giant to court to make their findings legally binding. They want Rogers to stop making claims fraudulent, pay the fine, pay restitution to affected customers and issue a “corrective statement” about their claims.

This isn’t the first time Rogers has taken heat about the authenticity of their advertising. In 2009, they were ordered to stop using the slogan “Canada’s Most Reliable Network” after Telus complained to the courts.

Rogers’ next slogan? My money’s on “Canada’s most sued network.”

Rogers Communications
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

We are a diversified Canadian communications and media company. We are engaged in wireless voice and data communications services through Wireless, Canada's largest wireless provider and the operator of the country's only national Global System for Mobile Communications ("GSM") based network. Through Cable we are one of Canada's largest providers of cable television services as well as... more

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Liam Britten

Liam Britten

Liam Britten is a writer and editor with a journalism background operating out of Vancouver. In addition to his work at Techvibes, he has been published in student publications across Canada, as well as local newspapers such as The MapleRidge-Pitt Meadows TIMES and The Langley Advance. An aficionado for the finer things in life — such as video games and sports — Liam is plugged into the tech... more

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