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Originally published at http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=72fb89e1-c5a0-4c3c-b768-a979b15568a7 and reproduced here under the Fair Use Doctrine. © The Ottawa Citizen 2008

Ottawa-area consumers choose their favourites

The Ottawa Citizen
Published: Friday, June 27, 2008

With the recipients determined by consumers and not by a panel of judges, The Consumers' Choice Award for Business Excellence is unique in North America.

The awards cover a broad range of categories of interest to the public and to the business community. The purpose is to publicly identify those establishments which have been voted by consumers as their choice for excellence.

Since 1987, the Consumers' Choice Award for Business Excellence has been honoring companies who excel in their respective categories. The 2008 Consumers' Choice Award Gala was held on May 4th, 2008, at the Ottawa Congress Centre, and the evening will be broadcast on Saturday, June 28, at 8 p.m. on A-Channel.

"I saw all the companies saying 'we're the best' but I thought the consumers should really decide who's their choice," says Ami Peleg, Founder and President of the Consumers' Choice Awards.

The program has been established for the past 21 years in Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg and Vancouver, as well as a number of U.S. cities.

The annual awards are based on a comprehensive and objective survey conducted by Leger Marketing, a member of Gallup International Association, one of the largest market research firms in the world.

"Whenever the public sees this logo, they'll know that these are the public's choice. We encourage people to patronize them," says Mr. Peleg. "We have had confirmation from many companies using the logo in all their publicity, newspaper ads, radio announcements, flyers and television commercials. They tell us that the exposure helps them considerably in increasing sales. We have experienced many inquiries from the public about different companies and we refer them to our very popular website at www.ccaward.com . We are proud to be able to provide an essential service to consumers everywhere." Executive Director of the Youth Services Bureau Alex Munter and television news anchor Sandra Blaikie were honoured as Ottawa's man and woman of the year. Moya Greene, president and C.E.O. of Canada Post Corporation, and Jeffrey Dale, president and C.E.O. of the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation were the business woman and man of the year. Please see below for a list of this year's recipients and keep it as a reference guide. The following pages highlight some of the 2008 recipients.


"We encourage people to patronize them"? Give me a break. Consumer Reports has published a negative article about DirectBuy, suggesting that the membership fee is excessive. There's no question that DirectBuy uses extreme high-pressure sales tactices, files lawsuits against consumers who realize that DirectBuy wasn't for them, even against members of the military service attempting to exercise their rights under federal law to avoid continuing payments. Franchisees reportedly advise purchasers of their program that they cannot cancel their membership even when this is guaranteed by state law, the Attorney General of at least one state has filed lawsuits to obtain refunds for consumers, and a Canadian judge has ruled the DirectBuy membership agreement unconscionable and uneforceable. But according to "Consumers Choice", this is an example of "Business Excellence." I don't think so.

By this action, Consumer's Choice has lost all credibility.

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