Canadians are invited to share their experiences with telecommunications sales practices

News release

CRTC launching inquiry on whether misleading or aggressive retail sales practices are used by large telecommunications service providers

July 16, 2018 – Ottawa-Gatineau – Starting today, Canadians are invited to share their personal experiences with possible misleading or aggressive retail sales practices used by large telecommunications service providers. The CRTC is accepting comments until August 30, 2018.

Canadians can participate in this consultation by:

  • filling out the online form
  • writing to the Secretary General, CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario K1A ON2
  • sending a fax to (819) 994-0218, or
  • using the secure My CRTC Account (GCKey) for confidential information.

Current and former employees of these telecommunications service providers are encouraged to share their experiences and can apply for confidentiality as needed.

Canadians will also be able to share their views through a public opinion survey. Details regarding the public opinion survey will be announced at a later date. Additionally, the Commission will conduct focus groups across the country and hold a public hearing, starting October 22, 2018, to further explore these issues.

This consultation arises following the government’s request that the CRTC submit a report on the use of these practices and their impact on consumers, as well as potential solutions to strengthen the existing consumer protections.


“To provide a meaningful report to the government, it is important that we hear from Canadians across the country. We invite them to share their personal experiences with their telecommunications service providers in terms of misleading or aggressive retail sales practices. In particular, we encourage current and former employees as well as those who are more likely to be affected by these sales practices – such as seniors and people living with a disability or whose first language is neither English nor French – to come forward with their stories.”
- Ian Scott, Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of the CRTC

Quick facts

  • On June 6, 2018, the Governor-in-Council used its power under Section 14 of the Telecommunications Act to direct the CRTC to prepare a report regarding the retail sales practices of Canada’s large telecommunications service providers.

  • The CRTC will take a close look at these issues, including:

    • Misleading practices such as failing to provide consumers with the information necessary to make informed decisions or providing incomplete, unclear or misleading information.
    • Aggressive sales practices including offering products to consumers that are unsuitable for them and the abuse of an ill-informed consumer base in order to benefit the providers.
    • The harm, or risk of harm, to consumers related to their finances or situations that could cause stress, confusion and frustration as a result of aggressive or misleading sales practices.
  • The CRTC today issued requests for information regarding sales practices and policies to large telecommunications service providers:

    • Bell Canada
    • Cogeco
    • Eastlink
    • Northwestel
    • Rogers Communications
    • SaskTel
    • Shaw Communications
    • TBayTel
    • TekSavvy
    • TELUS Communications
    • Videotron
    • Xplornet Communications
  • The comments collected through these requests will help shape the next phases of the public consultation.

  • The CRTC must submit its report to the government by February 28, 2019.

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