TRAI Extends Deadline till 31st March for Customers To Select TV Channels
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has extended till 31 March 2019 its deadline for customer to select TV channels. Earlier, the deadline was 1 February 2019.
 
In a statement, the regulator said existing or old plan of the subscribers will continue till the customer makes a choice of channels before 31st March. "Those subscribers who do not exercise the choice or select TV channels will be migrated to 'Best Fit Plan'," it added.
 
According to TRAI, the 'best fit plan' will be designed based on consumers' usage pattern and language spoken. "It should preferably be a blended combination of  various genres, while making 'best fit plan' for a subscriber, the distribution platform operators (DPOs) should ensure that payout per month of the 'best fit plan' generally does not exceed the payout per month of existing tariff plan of the subscriber," the regulator clarified.
 
The new tariff regime from TRAI allows viewers to select the television channels that they want to watch and pay the maximum retail price (MRP) set by respective broadcasters for each channel or for a bouquet of channels.
 
Viewers now have an option either to watch 100 free-to-air (FTA) channels, or add individual paid channels or bouquet/s offered by broadcasters in the same 100 channels pack. In this a customer can chose to go for 25 mandatory FTA channels from Doordarshan and add own FTA or paid channels.
 
There is one more option. Distributors are allowed by TRAI to offer bouquets as per local demand.
 
According to TRAI, there are about 100 million cable service TV homes and 67 million direct-to-homes (DTH) homes in India. It says, “As on date, about 65% of the subscribers of the cable services and 35% of the DTH subscribers have exercised the option (to select TV channels)….some subscribers were facing difficulties in selected channels or bouquets of their choice. In some cases, local cable operators (LCOs) have not been able to reach out to subscribers to create awareness among them and collect the option.”
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COMMENTS

Amitabha Bhattacharjee

2 months ago

We are subscriber of SITI channel in Bansdroni, Kolkata . We have been offered 2 pacjages of Rs 370/ and Rs 475/ = no option for selection of channels. What TRAI can do ?

Sandeep Malik

2 months ago

This is big scam by bjp government in the name of channels of your choice tariff is now more then doubled this is all bullshit

Kamlesh Nair

2 months ago

Such a mess this new regulation is as cable has offered only the best fit package which is absolute crap. I think government is absolute nuts & only good at filling their cronies bank accounts. I wish them goodbye in the next election.

Vijaykumar Kilar

2 months ago

Thanks. Good to know this. Details are not forthcoming from the DTH.
Earlier we were getting courteous service from DTH operators as they wanted our business.
Tata Sky call centre personnel now have been threatening to move our plan to best fit immediately if we don't opt for one without informing about the shifting of the end date to 31st March. They were extremely curt when asked for an email explaining the various options or a brief about the choices available. They had our money valid up to Sept 2019 and hence could take a stand of take it or leave it. Their argument is that everything is in the newspaper, go to our website or it is in channel xxx etc without clearly telling as to what is it that I will get for the money already with them. Most consumers who have paid for the full pack are in the dark. I really don't know whether the consumer has been benefited or the service levels will go down drastically as no one cares to retain a customer with the new norms.

REPLY

Prem Bajaj

In Reply to Vijaykumar Kilar 2 months ago

Not very sure what was going though the minds at TRAI, but the overall cost has increased significantly. and worst, there is blatant misleading adverts by every channel. There is no STAR service for only 49/- (package to include Natgeo, Discovery, Sports....) as advertised by Amir Khan. Absolute false advertising.

Kamlesh Nair

In Reply to Prem Bajaj 2 months ago

You are absolutely right. This is shambolic!

Sameer Mulla

In Reply to Kamlesh Nair 2 months ago

Absolutely right, this new rules made our tv sets blank.I think Trai is follwing the steps of Modi Government. Modi government 2 years back did the work of currency denomenation as they thought it will work for them but all were gone frustrated and after some times everyone forgetten,but our economy is still effected.The same thingh Trai has done .In villages they use to pay 150 to 200 per month now they have pay double. Trai have answer for this if we ask them for any resolution through mail or call center of Trai they say u have to wait for 7 days. Ab aisa hogaya hai bahar khana khaneke baare sochte the ab apne ghar main tv channels dekne ke liye sochna padhta hai
Trai aur government ka kuch nahi jaaata hai. They think thode din chalega fhir sab shannt hojayenge

Valentine's Day Deception: Don't Fall for These Bad Ads
When dating, there are any number of things that can go wrong — beeping your horn to announce that you’re outside, chewing with your mouth open, disclosing on the first date that you’re in not one, but several, competitive fantasy sports leagues. But in addition to the things that are largely self-inflicted, deceptive advertising can also act as a roadblock to love (or, at the very least, a second date).
With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, here are seven cautionary tales at the intersection of deceptive advertising and love.
 
1. Deception by chocolate
 
 
Anyone who says they’ve never stopped at a Walgreens or a CVS on the ride home from work on Valentine’s Day to pick up a heart-shaped box of chocolates is a liar. Don’t trust these people. What does it matter, anyway, when the chocolate is secured, so long as it’s delivered on time and it’s a quality box?
Which brings us to Godiva. A 2019 class-action complaint against the chocolate maker alleges that Godiva falsely markets its chocolates as luxury candies made in Belgium (see representations on packaging above) when, according to the plaintiffs, they’re actually made in Reading, Pennsylvania. No offense to Reading, which has been home to a seven-story pagoda since 1908, but Belgium’s capital city of Brussels has been called the “Chocolate Capital of the World.”
“Belgian chocolates are widely known to be among the highest quality in the world,” the complaint states. Reading chocolates? Not so much.
 
2. That empty feeling
 
 
There’s nothing wrong with being single on Valentine’s Day but if you are feeling empty on account of your singleness, snacking on your own box of chocolates may not necessarily fill the void.
A 2019 class-action complaint against Russell Stover, whose Whitman’s Sampler is pictured above, and Ghirardelli claims the companies mislead consumers by selling opaque packages of chocolate that are “predominately empty.” It’s what is known as slack-fill. Read all about it here.
 
3. Forget me bot
 
 
In the event that you find yourself the object of someone’s affection, the first thing you need to do is verify that your admirer is in fact a living, breathing human being — and not a bot that is more interested in getting you to open your wallet than your heart.
According to a 2014 FTC complaint against an English-based online dating service, some of the “winks” directed at users across the company’s dating sites came not from the profiles of actual people but from the fabricated profiles of computer-generated “Virtual Cupids,” aka bots. The flirtations specifically targeted non-paying users who were told to upgrade to paid memberships in order to see who winked at them. But even then it was difficult to tell that the profiles were fake, as the only indication that a particular user was in fact a Virtual Cupid came in the form of a scarcely seen symbol (a small “v” encircled by a larger “C”) in the top right corner of profiles:
 
Here’s the kicker: While the company, JDI Dating, agreed to pay more than $600,000 to settle the FTC’s allegations, the settlement did not spell the end of its Virtual Cupids program. It only required that JDI Dating clearly disclose that not all communications will come from actual people when users first sign up. So, when looking for love online, be sure to conduct a thorough review of a user’s profile before engaging further. After all, you don’t want to give your love away to just any-botty. 
 
4. Spice up your love life with science
 
 
“Step aside, fate,” the eHarmony billboard said. “It’s time science had a go at love.”
But as fate would have it, eHarmony did not have the science to back up claims that its “scientifically proven matching system” was any better at setting singles on a path to marriage than other ways of meeting people. In fact, one of the dating site’s own studies, submitted in response to an ASA inquiry, found that the opposite was true. Overall, more married couples reported meeting through online social networks, friends, work, or at a bar or club than on eHarmony.
Plenty more of our coverage on dating sites can be found here
 
5. Troublesome arrangements
 
 
If we’re talking about Valentine’s Day, we’re talking about flowers. An avalanche of flowers. According to the Society of American Florists, some 250 million roses alone are produced for the holiday.
But if you’re ordering online, don’t be surprised to find (1) a low, initial price for an arrangement more than double by the time you reach checkout and (2) the flowers delivered to your door not looking quite as nice as the bouquet pictured on the website. That’s what two TINA.org readers found to be the case with ProFlowers (1) and Avas Flowers (2, see comparison above).
Another tip: When ordering from a local florist, be sure that the seller is indeed a local florist and not someone posing as one
 
6. Son of a beach
Now, let’s say you’re eager to speed up the relationship and think that taking a trip abroad with your boyfriend/girlfriend of three weeks is “a good idea.” That’s your prerogative and we are only here to tell you about the potential deceptive advertising issues involved. Which include: Arriving to find that the beach at the resort doesn’t look anything like the “gorgeous oceanfront” pictured online.
That was what one TINA.org reader said he encountered upon arrival at the Grand Cayman Marriot Beach Resort. He sent us photos to prove it. Here’s what it looked like on the resort’s website with an arrow indicating the room where the reader said he was staying:
 
 
Now here’s the view from the room:
 
 
 
Oof. And the reader said it was like this for the duration of his six-night stay.
To prevent this from happening to you, communicate directly with the resort as part of the reservation process, and look for recent photos and reviews for another perspective. 
 
7. The ring
 
 
Now, let’s take it a step further and say you beat the odds and the trip abroad with your beloved went well — really well — so well, in fact, that you’re ready to propose. The hunt for a ring begins, which brings us to Costco and its “Tiffany” diamond rings.
As you might have expected, they weren’t actually Tiffany rings. Yet that did not stop Costco from promoting them as such on store signs, according to a lawsuit that Tiffany filed against the warehouse club in 2013. Four years later, a federal judge ordered that Costco pay the storied jewelry company $19 million.
Costco had argued — it appears unsuccessfully — that store signs used Tiffany as a generic term to describe a particular type of ring setting and that most consumers understood that they weren’t actually buying a Tiffany branded engagement ring. Regardless, if you’re thinking about popping the big question, make sure you have the right merchandise. 
See some of our previous Valentine’s Day posts here.
 
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TRAI Refutes Reports of Rise in TV Bills after New Broadcast Norms; Consumers Disagree
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), while refuting reports about possible increase in cable TV and direct-to-home (DTH) bills, had said that its new framework may actually decrease TV bills. The statement came after a research note from CRISIL said that the new norms would result in higher bills for the cable TV and DTH subscribers. Many consumers are saying that their TV bills are going up after 1 February 2019 for viewing the same set of channels.
 
Addressing the media in New Delhi, TRAI chairman Ram Sevak (RS) Sharma said that the report was prepared on an 'inadequate understanding' of the TV distribution market and it was incorrect.
 
"The report is based on choosing top-rated channels on all-India basis and considers only one weekly report dated 25 January 2019, from TV Rating Agency, BARC. The report is not based on detailed and focused analysis, supported by data. This report is more likely to mislead the subscribers while they are likely to migrate to new framework and would results in misunderstanding," a statement issued by TRAI said.
 
TRAI secretary SK Gupta said: "In three months, we expect prices of various channels to go down."
 
In the report, ratings agency CRISIL had said, "The network capacity fee (NCF) and channel prices announced by broadcasters and distributors as per the TRAI's new guidelines could increase the monthly bill of most subscribers of television channels."
 
"Our analysis of the impact of the regulations indicates a varied impact on monthly TV bills. Based on current pricing, the monthly TV bill can go up by 25% from Rs230-Rs240 to about Rs300 per month for viewers who opt for the top-10 channels, but will come down for those who opt up to top five channels," says Sachin Gupta, senior director, ratings at CRISIL.
 
The new regime, which came into effect on 1 February 2019, will benefit popular channels and hasten adoption of over-the-top (OTT or content providers who stream media over the Internet, such as Netflix and Hotstar) platforms, and will be a mixed bag for viewers and distributors, the ratings agency had said.
 
The regulator however, claims that its preliminary data analysis shows a reduction in TV bills. It says, "These are early days and detailed data-sets will be available only after a few weeks. Yet, the Authority has information from few large distribution platform owners (DPOs) and the preliminary data analysis reflects actual savings by subscribers to the tune 10% to 15% in metro towns and between 5% to 10% in non-metro (DAS3 and DAS4) areas.
 
Many consumers on Twitter, however, are saying that their TV bill has gone up after the new changes become effective on 1st February. 
 
One Pinku Dey (@PinkuDe79114044) says, the new regime has given extra burden on common people. "…new pricing system of cable TV & DTH service do not work. It gives extra burden to the common people. Because monthly bill is increased. Early my monthly bill was Rs200 & now it crossing Rs300 with lesser channels. Please change the system," he says.
 
 
 
 
  
 
TRAI also clarified that as per the regulations, service-providers even waive off or give discounts to consumers on the network capacity fee-NCF. 
 
Mr Sharma said that the regulator has received several complaints from consumers regarding blackouts on DTH platforms, and offerings of multiple TV connections which TRAI is looking into and has issued necessary guidelines to the operators.
 
He noted that the primary aim of the new norms is to empower consumers to make their own choices and let the market forces decide the prices.
 
TRAI has also asked operators to provide options of separate connections and choices of channels for more than one television in a household, the chairman told reporters.
 
Talking about second connection in the same home, the TRAI has said, it received complaints about issues over price for the second TV connection and had sought details of special schemes for provision of the second or subsequent connection. "The Authority expects that DPOs will declare special policies/ schemes for multiple connections within a TV Home in a day or so. TRAI is having close watch on it and intervene if so required," it said.
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COMMENTS

Peruvemba Subramanian Ramachandran

2 months ago

Even with the Tamil Nadu Govt's Arasu Cable TV, the rates have increased nearly 40-50% for selecting the option to watch the popular channels which are priced at the maximum for different languages. I was paying Rs.150; now I have to pay Rs.300; and that too for shody service.

AAR

2 months ago

1.People collectively avoid big pay channels then their price would come down.
2.Pay channels do carry full advertisements like Free channels, not sure why.

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