If firm not finalising relief steps for subscribers over channel cancellations
THE BROADCASTING regulator yesterday threatened TrueVisions with higher penalties if it refuses to finalise remedial measures for subscribers affected by the cancellation of HBO’s six movie channels early this month.
“The broadcasting committee of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission has agreed to order TrueVisions to negotiate with its subcommittee on consumer rights protection within seven days,” said Pakdee Manaves, deputy secretary-general of the NBTC.
After the no-show by the country’s largest pay-TV operator at last week’s meeting of the subcommittee and representatives from affected consumers, the broadcasting panel says it wants to solve this problem as quickly as possible.
Last month, TrueVisions submitted a customer remedial plan to the broadcasting committee but the subcommittee on consumer rights protection chaired by Supinya Klangnarong, an NBTC member, was upset with the plan, saying it did not go far enough.
Supinya’s team is also requesting more responsibility for this abrupt channel change, as it was done with less than 30 days’ advance notice to customers.
She tweeted that TrueVisions had violated contract rules for pay-TV consumers in this regard, so the broadcasting regulator should take legal action.
According to TrueVisions’ remedial plan, subscribers of Gold, Super Family, Sport Family and Happy Family packages will be upgraded to the next level for a month for free, while Platinum subscribers will get 1,000 reward points on the True Black Card.
TrueVisions also added seven new channels – Warner TV, Paramount Channel HD, Celestial Classic Movies, Food Network, Fox Action Movies HD, Sony Channel and True Film HD 2 – immediately after HBO’s feeds were switched off on January 1.
The firm is also allowing pay-TV subscribers of less than six months either to cancel their contract or downgrade their package.
Subscribers with six-month packages who want to cancel will get refunded for the entire outstanding balance. Last week, a TrueVisions executive revealed that only 500 subscribers had cancelled their contracts after HBO Asia’s channels were pulled.
Those channels were HBO HD, HBO Hit, HBO Signature, HBO Family, Red by HBO and Cinemax.