Shaw Proposes Comprehensive Guidelines to Maximize Choice for Consumers
June 27, 2014 --
OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 06/27/14 -- Shaw Communications Inc. (TSX: SJR.B)(NYSE: SJR) today proposed the implementation of a set of principles - called Market Guidelines to Maximize Customer Choice and Flexibility - designed to add flexibility and ensure consumers get the most out of their cable or satellite services.
Shaw made the proposal as part of its submission to the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission's Let's Talk TV proceeding. Among other outcomes, Shaw's proposed guidelines would require that:
-- cable and satellite providers offer a majority of programming services on a standalone basis and that licensed programming services must allow their services to be offered on a standalone basis; and -- consumers not be forced to purchase certain high-cost services (like sports) as part of their basic package - instead, consumers would be given the option to receive these services on an enhanced basic, through a discretionary package or on a pick-and-pay basis.
"These guidelines respond to the Commission's and the Government's desire for more choice and flexibility for Canadians and could take effect immediately as a policy framework that provides the Commission and industry with the means to oversee market conduct," says Peter Bissonnette, President, Shaw Communications. "In today's highly competitive environment, Shaw will continue to meet our customers' expectations for choice and flexibility by investing in technologies and services that enable greater personalization and customization of content choices."
Shaw's proposed guidelines would more effectively achieve the Commission's objectives for greater choice and flexibility with provisions that ensure a majority of services are available on a pick-and-pay basis.
Shaw already offers a high degree of flexibility and choice to customers, with more than 90 individual pick-and- pay channels available to Shaw Cable customers and more than 70 for Shaw Direct customers. Further, all Shaw Media specialty channels may also be offered by cable and satellite providers on a pick-and-pay-basis, reflecting Shaw's ongoing commitment to value and flexibility.
"We respectfully submit that the proposed guidelines will provide a more balanced approach to maximizing choice and flexibility while protecting Canadian jobs, ensuring that the economic engine of the Canadian broadcasting system remains strong, and safeguarding the system's ability to provide Canadian programming to consumers," says Shaw's submission.
"Shaw supports a market-driven evolution toward more pick-and-pay alternatives. Our proposed guidelines will achieve this objective in a measured manner that preserves the viability of the distribution, programming and production industries and, in turn, the underlying economics of - and customer choice within - the Canadian broadcasting system," the submission adds.
Electronic versions of Shaw's submission including full details of our comprehensive guidelines will be available on the CRTC website at www.crtc.gc.ca.
About Shaw Communications Inc.
Shaw Communications Inc. is a diversified communications and media company, providing consumers with broadband cable television, High-Speed Internet, Home Phone, telecommunications services (through Shaw Business), satellite direct-to-home services (through Shaw Direct) and engaging programming content
(through Shaw Media). Shaw serves 3.2 million customers, through a reliable and extensive fibre network. Shaw Media operates one of the largest conventional television networks in Canada, Global Television, and 19 specialty networks including HGTV Canada, Food Network Canada, HISTORY® and Showcase. Shaw is traded on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges and is included in the S&P/TSX 60 Index (Symbol: TSX - SJR.B, NYSE - SJR). For more information about Shaw, please visit www.shaw.ca.
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