Pete Evans, CBC News:
Rogers services are back online for most customers after a daylong outage at the telecom giant that left millions of Canadians without internet and cellular service, while also disrupting government services and payment systems.
Tony Staffieri, chief executive and president of Rogers, said in an open letter that the company apologizes for the service interruption. He gave no explanation for the outage or how many customers were affected.
If Cloudflare’s data is any indication, the answer to the second mystery is pretty much every customer. The amount of Rogers traffic stayed at zero for an entire day. It is awful for everyone affected, but do not worry — Rogers will automatically apply a credit to customers’ accounts. And that is really what this post is about.
Lisa Belmonte, Narcity:
During another big Rogers outage that happened back in April 2021, wireless calls, SMS and data services were down across Canada for almost an entire day because of an issue with a software update.
After it was resolved and service was restored, Rogers issued credits to customers who were impacted by the outage.
A credit equivalent to the wireless service fee from that day was automatically applied to the customer’s bill the next month.
If someone pays Rogers $100 per month for cellular service and another $100 per month for internet — not uncommon rates in this ferociously expensive country — it likely means getting one day’s credit for each, for a total of about $6. That is a slap in the face.
There is a disconnect between how much these services cost to end users and how much they enable. Many people depend on a single company for their connectivity services, as bundle pricing disincentivize us from shopping around. In return, we expect ongoing service, divided into manageable monthly payments. When that fails, it is worth more than a free cup of coffee and an apology.
In fairness to Rogers, it can see itself providing extraordinary value at $3 per day per connection. But we expect far more than that, and it would be obscene for a service provider to begin charging based on how much it enables. Internet access is arguably a human right but its availability, price, and quality is left up to private companies which hate competing. So what would be so wrong with nationalizing internet or cellular service?