Friday, May 22, 2009

Fox Channel removed from standard television package

**UPDATE: "Mr Sharpe, you misunderstand . . ..."
From: Ask Jim []
Sent: 2009 May 22 8:41 AM
To: Sharpe, Don; Ask Jim
Subject: RE: Fox Channel

Hi Don

There has been allot of confusion on this topic. We are not removing the Fox News channel or censoring any channel including this one. Like many channels if Canadians want to drop the channel the choice is 100% with the customer.

We certainly love to provide the best value and service to you and our customers. In fact we enjoy it and will continue to add more channels and will also launch Interactive TV free to our customers in late July

Thanks for your comments
My cable television provider, Shaw Direct, has pissed me off.
Below is the email exchange, updates will be posted when received.
From: Sharpe, Don
Sent: Monday, May 18, 2009 2:18 AM
To: Ask Jim
Subject: Fox Channel

I hear you are thinking of removing my Fox Channel.

Don't. I like Fox.

Call me on my cell, xxx x6x-2x9x or email me at if you aren't clear about this.

Don Sharpe
From: Ask Jim []
Sent: 2009 May 18 1:17 PM
To: Sharpe, Don
Subject: RE: Fox Channel

Hello Don,

Shaw Direct will not be removing Fox News from its channel lineup. We are enabling customers to make the choice if they would like to receive it. We’ve made changes to how we offer Fox News channel 503. The recent inappropriate and disrespectful comments on the channel regarding the Canadian Military’s efforts in Afghanistan comments were found to be offensive to many customers. Because of this, many Digital Favourites and FYI subscribers have expressed concern over not having an option to remove FOX News from their line-up. We are moving the channel to an opt-in service starting May 19.

Because of the way the system is set up, we require people who wish to continue receiving the channel to contact us to reactivate it. Currently we have no plans to remove the channel from our lineup. We did want to continue offering the channel to those customers who wanted it which is why it is now an opt in channel rather than being removed completely.

We are unable to locate your account with the information you have provided to us. We would like to add the opt-in code to your account now so you will not miss any of FOX News's programming. If you could please respond with your account number, primary phone number or service address, we can then do so.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us. Please include any previous correspondence with your replies.
Thank you for choosing Shaw Direct & have a great day,

Katie G.
Administration – Ask Jim
Shaw Direct – Shaw Communications Inc.

From: Sharpe, Don
Sent: 2009 May 22 6:41 AM
To: 'Ask Jim'
Subject: RE: Fox Channel

Today is Friday, and I'm wearing my red shirt, as well my Canadian Forces wristband.
There are two 'Support Our Troops' magnets on my truck, and I have 'O Canada' tattoo'd on my leg.

I pay my taxes, am a Canadian citizen, and I shouldn't have to remind you (as a public broadcaster) that Section 2(b) of the Charter states that "Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms: ... freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication."

Whoever made the decision to pull Fox news out of the lineup has to be able to justify it with more than just the comments you refer to. As offensive as they were, the opportunity for free speech and public debate in a democracy are at stake. You want my opinion on what's offensive on the Shaw lineup?

How about 'Muslim Insight', starring radical Imam Syed Sowahardy! Perhaps you're unaware of his history, and would pull his show off the air if you did. More likely though, your actions are guided by the usual left-wing, elitist 'we know what's good for you' thinking that currently dominates public policy decisions in some large corporations. I suggest that rather than being 'pro-active and passionately defending our men and women in the Canadian Armed Forces', you're just afraid. Your cute little slogan at the bottom of the email is apparently an empty promise for your customers and staff.

You dishonor the efforts of serving Canadian soldiers, and disgrace the men and women who've given their lives to defend this country. Free speech in a democracy means allowing opinions you don't agree with, even if you have to defend your actions to those customers with 'hurt feelings'. If you've given up the right to free speech because you're afraid you'll lose some customers, then shame on you. Members of the Taliban are shooting at our troops, and you think they're upset because an idiot disc-jockey made those weak-ass comments? His right to make those comments is exactly what they're fighting for!

Here's hoping you come to your senses in the near future. Maybe watch 'The View' a couple of times, although keep a barf bag handy. Drop by Glen Beck's website for some insight into the hatchet job Barbara and Whoopi did on him this week when he was a 'guest' on their show. You want to make real Canadians happy? Block 'The View' from our view.

Don Sharpe

ps. You can't find my account, when I gave you all of the above (deleted on this post) and my cell number? Sounds more like you didn't try very hard.
I have always been impressed with you product and service, including telephone and field service staff. Thank you for taking the time to seriously consider my reply.

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