Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Can you hear me now?

Most of you have seen this:

This is just a part of the latest $9 million advertising campaign embarked upon by the Harper government to convince you that they are wrapping their loving arms around you and are going to give you everything you ever wanted on your smartphone for a whole lot less money than you pay now.

But, as with all things Harper, it is an ad campaign about nothing. You will not have more choices, you will not get lower prices and you will not have better service.

The strategy, (if you can call something so poorly conceived and managed a "strategy"), set forth by the Wii-generation occupants of the PMO, was to lure in new telecommunications companies by auctioning off the 700 mHz frequency spectrum. The idea was that this would allow a fourth major player into the game of "long term evolution" (LTE) and the market pressure of competition would give you more choice, lower prices and, along with sparkle ponies and rainbows, service even in the deep woods.

The problem from the outset is that the pack of wise-asses in Ottawa who dreamed up the idea have the attention span of a two year-old and the research acumen of a kindergarten class. In the last sell-off of spectrum they watched small companies buy in and then within a year attempt to sell themselves to the big three telecoms. That should have taught them something. It didn't.

In order for a fourth player to enter the wireless market it first needed a banker. Wind Mobile had one, but things went kind of badly. The Dutch company which was to be funding Wind Mobile's expansion wanted something in return for their investment. Something like ... financial and corporate control. That spawned an investment review by the federal government and then the serious people from down the street dropped their bombshell. The Dutch company was controlled by Russian oligarch Mikhail Fridman who is busy fighting off Russian courts over some shady deals with the Russian government. If the brats advising cabinet had done more than 30 seconds worth of research they would have known this from the beginning and would have been fully aware that their so-called plan was doomed. Not to mention that Wind uses equipment provided by a Chinese "private" company which has raised security concerns in the U.S. (Huawei has been labelled a "Security Threat" by more than one country). That too, should have been readily apparent to the short-pantsers.

So, as the 700 mHz spectrum is put up for bids today the Harper government will allow the same old companies to swallow up your property and charge it back to you for the same old rates with the same level of gouging. Wind Mobile pulled out.

As Michael Geist points out, this whole effort having resulted in total failure, the only option left is to impose regulation on the wireless industry in Canada. Good luck with that. It's not going to happen.

This is just the latest in a stream of propaganda. Lots of advertising, costing lots of money and resulting in absolutely nothing. More vacant activity from the phoney who pretends to be a leader.


e.a.f. said...

all the wasted money for cheaper cell phone service was just smoke and mirrors. it was intended to distract people from the real issues in Canada and to make some think the cons actually cared about them.

First off, cell phones are not a necessity. civilization got on quite well with out them. Just because people want to avoid life, and keep talking on the phone,, reading on the phone, playing games on the phone, etc, doesn't mean it has to be delivered to them.

It might be better if those young and old idiots of the harper con gang spent a little more time figuring out how to help vets and providing decent housing for First Nations people, the country would be way further ahead, not to mention, opening up those libraries again.

astone said...

Ditto, e.a.f. !

Boris said...

Dave, kindergarten kids often the ones who ask some of the most direct questions. They haven't got ideological bullshit to cloud their vision and are intensely curious about the why and how of just about everything. They could run circles around the shortpantsers.

Simon said...

hi Dave...Brilliant. I hadn't heard about the Russian connection and I had considered signing up with WIND once I escaped from my present servitude. Honestly, those Con clowns can't do anything right...