So far, our MPs have called Rogers-Shaw a bad deal ✅, the Competition Bureau has called it a bad deal ✅, but Minister Champagne has not ❌. As the one person who can fully stop this buyout, we need Champagne’s full-throated opposition.
The Competition Bureau coming out against Rogers-Shaw means something HUGE: our voices HAVE BEEN HEARD. To date, we’ve sent the Bureau over 68,000 signatures, comments and survey responses from the OpenMedia community and beyond (shout out to our friends at ACORN, Leadnow, and North99!) calling on them to block Rogers-Shaw outright. We just witnessed the power of YOU in action — and it’s awesome.5,6
But the deal is FAR from over, and Rogers is fighting back with money, power, and lobbyists.7 Rogers has shown they’re willing to sacrifice buying Freedom Mobile (a cell phone carrier owned by Shaw) if it means the other parts of the deal will still be approved — AKA the “Freedom Mobile spinoff” scenario. But Freedom or no Freedom, as a whole the Rogers-Shaw buyout is bad for people in Canada and should be blocked outright.8-11 Here’s a few quick reasons why:
- Loss of home Internet competition: Even if the cell phone portion of the deal is removed, allowing Rogers to buy out Shaw will still give Rogers unprecedented control over vast amounts of Canada’s Internet — a recipe for serious harm to home Internet competition, choice, and affordability in Canada.
- Loss of innovation: Historically, Shaw has been a first mover and innovator in Canada, building their brand on being one of the first to offer free routers, free wifi hotspots in public, wifi pods at home, and through Freedom, and unlimited mobile data. Losing the pressure of Shaw means Rogers, and other giants, have less incentive to provide innovative services to customers.
- The future of Freedom Mobile: Spinning off Freedom in order to sell it to another telecom giant like Quebecor, or even Xplornet, is no better of a solution than selling it to Rogers. The outcome is the same: yet another important competitor will be lost, and people in Canada will continue to pay some of the highest prices in the world for cell phone services.12
This our last, golden opportunity to stop the Rogers-Shaw deal for good. The Competition Bureau just proved how powerful our voices are when we speak up together — which is why we CANNOT let Rogers’ voice be the only one Minister Champagne hears now. If the Minister takes a key stance against this deal, Rogers-Shaw is dead in the water.
We need to remind the Minister and the PM that all eyes are on them; any version of the Rogers-Shaw deal, Freedom Mobile or not, is bad for Canadians and must be stopped. We won’t accept less. If you haven’t already, take action to stop Rogers-Shaw by emailing your MP!