Shaw Communications has just launched a great customer consultation to hear their views on internet use and fees. There are 35 in-person dialogues but, ironically, limited ways to take part online. We think they can do better.
In the last few weeks, there’s been an interesting public debate about the internet – how Canadians think their internet services providers (ISPs like Bell or Rogers) should limit or charge them for how they use the web.
This was sparked by a controversial CRTC ruling on so-called “Usage Based Billing”. If #UBB is something new to you, CBC has a great 2-minute explanation here.
The CRTC’s decision was questioned by some Canadians, and 416,207 of them signed a petition on openmedia.ca asking for the decision to be reversed.
Shaw, one of Canada’s leading telecom companies, seems to have taken note of the public’s concerns and has launched a consultation with its customers to hear their views on usage and fees.
I think Shaw deserves credit for starting this conversation. More companies could be engaging their customer to co-create new programs, policies, products or decisions. Ultimately, the quality and utility – both for Shaw and its customers – will depend on the process design, I think it’s a promising campaign.
Bringing the conversation online
The Shaw conversations are described here. People can take part in one of 35 in-person dialogues, send Shaw an email, or call a service rep.
For a customer engagement that’s really about how people use the internet, I think these participation streams should be complemented by more online dialogue. Shaw could be hosting a discussion board or idea forum on its website – similar to what the Government of Canada did for its consultations on the Digital Economy Strategy. This would foster a broader conversation, and allow people to take part who can’t attend face-to-face events.
It seems to me that more online engagement would better fit a conversation about the internet and how Canadians use it.
What do you think? Would you take part? What would you tell Shaw and other participants?
– Ellis Westwood -