Tag Archives: media mergers

Astroturf Up Close And Personal

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Posted by Tracy Rosenberg June 2012 at Oakland Local

I was out-gunned 30-1.

On May 26th, I went to the California Public Utilities Commission to encourage them to perform a thorough investigation of the impact of the AT&T / T-Mobile merger on California consumers.

As a public interest advocate, I’m used to being the underdog. Despite sending lots of last-minute emails asking people to come, I didn’t expect a huge amount of folks would be able to dispense with work and family and rush over to the commission meeting.

But I didn’t expect it to be this bad. Continue reading Astroturf Up Close And Personal

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Mergers Lock In The Status Quo

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Posted by Tracy Rosenberg on February 19th, 2014
Mag-Net Blog

The San Francisco Bay Area is often seen across the country as a blue outpost and a place where liberal ideas predominate. This image is especially widespread in media reports which emphasize cultural and political innovations. But the local media system which indulges in the self-congratulatory blather is itself a retrograde example of corporate consolidation and dominance. More like Texas than Vermont, if you like.

If the purpose of media systems is to connect and to exchange information, then Bay Area communication is about as controlled by big media corporations as the US is dependent on imported oil. The statistics are terrifying: Continue reading Mergers Lock In The Status Quo

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Charter Deal Conditions Could Run Gamut From MFN Clauses to Rate Hike Caps

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Communications Daily – August 17 2015

Charter Communications likely has headed off many broadband-related merger conditions by addressing them early on, experts said. But multiple broadband and cable matters likely will be brought up by and before regulators as Charter seeks approval to buy Bright House Networks and Time Warner Cable,they said. Charter agreed “from the get-go” to some of the most obvious potential conditions—net neutrality and discounted broadband offerings to low-income populations—said Barry Orton, telecom professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. That, plus that Charter, TWC and BHN don’t share a “bully” reputation with Comcast based on complaints about strong-arm tactics, indicates the deals could have a relatively easy time winning approval, especially compared with Comcast’s aborted attempt to buy TWC, industry officials said. Continue reading Charter Deal Conditions Could Run Gamut From MFN Clauses to Rate Hike Caps

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Why The Death Of Comcast-Time Warner Merger Won’t Help Consumers

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by Peter Lee  San Francisco Chronicle  April 29 2015

Credit to the Federal Communications Commission for doing its job — about 20 years too late.

Due to opposition from the FCC and U.S. Department of Justice, Comcast dropped its proposed $45 billion bid to purchase Time Warner Cable on Friday, preventing two of the nation’s least-popular companies from becoming one enormously unpopular mega-company.

For consumers, the failed merger represents something of a muted victory. The FCC’s record on protecting consumers has been beyond abysmal since the federal government deregulated the telecom industry in the mid-1990s, but Friday’s decision shows the agency is still, apparently, willing to draw the line somewhere.

Continue reading Why The Death Of Comcast-Time Warner Merger Won’t Help Consumers

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The Comcast-Time Warner Deal is Officially Off

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For Immediate Release: April 24th, 2015

OAKLAND — Comcast announced today that the proposed merger with Time Warner is officially off, and local and national civil rights organizations couldn’t be happier.

This announcement comes after months of pressure from diverse groups representing Latino and Black communities, calling the proposed merger disastrous for low-income consumers. Members and partners of the Media Action Grassroots Network (MAG-Net), representing more than 175 grassroots organizations, have been actively organizing to ensure the merger did not get approved. Continue reading The Comcast-Time Warner Deal is Officially Off

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Proposed CPUC Rejection of Comcast/TWC Adds Wrinkle to California’s Review of Deal

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Communications Daily – April 14 2015

California Public Utilities Commissioner Mike Florio’s filing Friday suggesting the CPUC reject the Comcast/Time Warner Cable (TWC) deal further unsettles the commission’s review of the merger, industry observers in the state told us. Florio said in his alternate proposed decision rejecting the deal (see 1504100049) that Administrative Law Judge Karl Bemesderfer’s proposed decision approving Comcast/ TWC with 25 conditions (see 1502170059) can’t effectively mitigate “adverse consequences” posed by the merger. Comcast “does not have a good record of abiding” by CPUC-imposed conditions and the company has contested all 25 conditions in the Bemesderfer draft, Florio said. Continue reading Proposed CPUC Rejection of Comcast/TWC Adds Wrinkle to California’s Review of Deal

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CPUC Should Say No To Supersizing Comcast

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Bigger isn’t always better.

Of all the cable, telephone and Internet companies, the one with the most awful reputation is Comcast. Type the words “Comcast customer service” into a search engine and prepare to be flooded with customers using words like “nightmarish,” “embarrassing,” “worst ever,” “epic failure” and “customer service from hell.”

And America is not enduring this for the sake of bargain-basement prices.

 

Continue reading CPUC Should Say No To Supersizing Comcast

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