If you have been following the Rogers vs Bell scuffle regarding the Rogers NHL GameCentre Live programming, and more directly, the GamePlus App that accompanies the package – ONLY if you are a Rogers’ subscriber. In Rogers third quarter earnings call last week, when one of the reporters brought up the complaint from Bell, CEO Guy Laurence referred to them as “crybaby Bell.” So far, there has been no response from Bell, but in his ‘Mercer Report,’ comedian Rick Mercer made light of the situation and said that when Bell heard of the remark, they said “it takes one to know one”…not true of course, but a properly accurate look at a laughable situation. The video is less than a minute long and well worth watching to put a smile on your face…probably even the face of Bell’s CEO.
The problem started when Rogers won the rights to the NHL games for the next 12 years at a cost of $5.2 BILLION. If you know anything about Canada, you know they take their hockey very seriously, so Bell was not happy that Rogers won the rights. The package is called Rogers NHL GameCentre Live and anybody on any network that is willing to give Rogers $200 for the year can have complete access to any and all video feed that is broadcast over the airwaves. Rogers was not offering this package to non-Rogers’ subscribers out of the goodness of their heart – it is a rule set down by the Canadian Radio-television and Communications Commission (CRTC).
So far everybody was happy until a disgruntled subscriber on Shaw’s network pointed out that Rogers also offers a GamePlus application that is only available to Rogers’ customers and is part of their $200 a year contract. What GamePlus allows is different views of the game – for instance, they have a camera mounted on the referee’s helmet – that are fed online into a Rogers’ mobile subscriber’s device using GamePlus. Bell filed a complaint with the CRTC and now the ‘puck’ is in their court, so to speak. Rogers claims that the GamePlus content is not fed via video feeds, but only online, so it does not fall within the jurisdictions of the normal video broadcasting. The CRCT can either issue a decision based on the information that they have, ask for more information or call a formal hearing. It will be interesting to see how this all turns out and we would love to hear what you have to say…please hit us up on our Google+ Page and give us your opinion…as always, we would love to hear from you.