What People Are Really Saying About Comcast-Time Warner Cable

Stay tuned….more to come!

Regulators

“It’s going to be hard for someone to make a persuasive case that reducing four firms to three is actually going to improve competition for the benefit of American consumers. Any proposed transaction would get a very hard look from the antitrust division.” – (The New York Times, 1.30.14)

-Bill Baer, Assistant AG, Antitrust Division, DOJ

“What this is going to do is handcuff customers to their cable provider, Comcast, and enable Comcast to charge more. But even more troubling is the fact that it’s going to be in a position where it will be able to prevent future forms of competition.” – (NPR’s Here & Now, 2.18.14)

-David Balto, Former policy director at the FTC

“This is so over-the-top that it ought to be dead on arrival at the FCC[…]The proposed deal runs roughshod over competition and consumer choice and is an affront to the public interest.” – (Examiner, 03.20.14)

-Michael Copps, Former FCC Chairman and Commissioner (2001-2011)

Industry members

“There is nothing that I can see that’s positive about it for anybody in the video or broadband or content business.” – (The Wall Street Journal, 2.21.14)

-Charlie Ergen, Chairman, Dish Network

‘‘When the No. 1 and the No. 2 cable operators merge it is a cause of concern that requires significant scrutiny.” – (The New York Times, 2.13.14)

-Randel Falco, CEO, Univision Communications

“I don't know that we want anybody to control half of the US Internet, and that's the real basis of our objection to the merger.” – (CNET, 4.22.14)

-Reed Hastings, CEO, Netflix

Academic researchers

“There is much to suggest that this merger is about as anti-competitive, and therefore anti-consumer, as one can get.” – (The Hill’s Congress Blog 03.27.14)

-Irwin Stelzer, Senior Fellow and Director of the Economic Policy Studies Group, Hudson Institute

“Comcast is in the business of competing with the Internet, at this point. They want to make sure that you don’t get Internet access other than through them, and that their own partners get preference over their giant digital pipes. They have no particular interest in making sure that Americans get very, very fast, very high capacity Internet connections because they’d like their own video to do better.” – (NPR, 2.14.14)

-Susan Crawford, Visiting Professor at Harvard University, Former Obama Administration Tech Advisor

Media

“Let me ask two questions about the proposed deal. First, why would we even think about letting it go through? Second, when and why did we stop worrying about monopoly power?” – (The New York Times, 2.16.14)

-Paul Krugman, New York Times Columnist

“Not all market consolidations are bad. But the Comcast-TWC tie-up would create a mega-empire in an industry that is already dominated by a few huge companies. For this reason alone – to say nothing of how long you’d have to stay on hold on a combined Comcast-TWC customer service line – the deal must be stopped.” – (New York Magazine, 2.13.14)

-Kevin Roose, New York Magazine

“Indeed, one of the primary reasons that the Comcast-Time Warner merger must be stopped is the fact that it will further consolidate Comcast’s already dominant position in broadband Internet, which will give the company extraordinary power to impose higher fees on content providers like Netflix and ESPN and Hulu and FX and HBO. The future is quite conceivably one in which we end up paying more for TV, because one company controls the infrastructure that delivers our bandwidth.” – (Salon, 4.18.14)

-Andrew Leonard, Salon

Public interest groups

“In an already uncompetitive market with high prices that keep going up and up, a merger of the two biggest cable companies should be unthinkable. This deal would be a disaster for consumers and must be stopped.” – (Politico, 2.13.14)

-Craig Aaron, President and CEO, Free Press

‘‘No one woke up this morning wishing their cable company was bigger. This deal would be the cable guy on steroids — pumped up, unstoppable and grasping for your wallet.’’ – (The New York Times, 2.13.14)

-Craig Aaron, President and CEO, Free Press

“This plan doesn’t bode well for consumers. The FCC appears to have abandoned the principle that all Web sites and services should be treated equally on the Internet.” – (The Washington Post, 4.24.14)

-Delara Derakhshani, Policy Counsel, Consumers Union