Consumer Advocates Head Back To FCC, Continue Urging Agency To Reject Comcast/TWC Merger

Consumer Advocates Head Back To FCC, Continue Urging Agency To Reject Comcast/TWC Merger

After a long pause, the FCC’s review of the Comcast/TWC merger is back underway. Now, the wave of comments in response to Comcast’s last data dump are starting to roll in, once again asking the agency to block the merger. [More]

Roku And Comcast Finally Make Nice, Will Allow HBO Go And Showtime Apps

Roku And Comcast Finally Make Nice, Will Allow HBO Go And Showtime Apps

A personal anecdote, if you’ll allow… A few years back, I — ever a good son — bought my mother a Roku box for her TV (that I’d also bought her), only to find out that she, like millions of other Comcast subscribers, was not allowed to access the device’s HBO Go app because she’s a Comcast customer. But those darks days are coming to an end, now that Kabletown and Roku are suddenly buddies. [More]

Here’s What $184K In Campaign Contributions Gets Comcast — A Letter Of Support From Two Senators

According to OpenSecrets.org, Casey's campaign and leadership PAC took in more than $114,000 from Comcast during the 2014 election cycle alone. The cable colossus was the Pennsylvania Senator's top contributor.

Earlier today, the two U.S. Senators from Pennsylvania put aside partisan squabbling for a moment to agree that the only things more awesome than campaign contributions from Comcast are the things Comcast has told us are really cool about its pending merger with Time Warner Cable. [More]

Comcast Forgets To Delete Revealing Note From Blog Post

The section highlighted in orange originally appeared in Comcast's blog post from earlier today, but has since been removed.

Earlier today, Comcast published a blog post to criticize the newly announced coalition opposing its merger with Time Warner Cable and to cheer about the FCC’s decision to restart the “shot clock” on that deal. But someone at Kabletown is probably getting a stern talking-to right now, after an accidental nugget of honesty made its way into that post. [More]

New Coalition Steps Up To Fight “Mega Comcast” Merger As FCC Restarts Review Clock

New Coalition Steps Up To Fight “Mega Comcast” Merger As FCC Restarts Review Clock

It’s the plot of a certain kind of action movie or video game that we’ve all seen and played a thousand times: the big bad robot/alien/lizard comes crashing into town and the only thing that will stop it is when an unlikely band of allies group up and save the world. If politics and business are a game, as so many participants seem to think, then now they are apparently one of that genre, as an unlikely band of allies is now grouping together under one banner to fight the Comcast/Time Warner Cable mega-merger. [More]

This chart from the GAO report shows that the top 15% of cable Internet users will be surpassing current data caps by 2018, and using several times that amount of data by 2020.

Govt. Report Criticizes Cable Companies For Cashing In On Data Caps

A growing number of cable companies are implementing data caps (sorry — “data thresholds”), which put limits on how much data a subscriber could use before facing penalties ranging from warning messages to throttled speeds to overage fees. A new report from the federal Government Accountability Office says that lack of competition in the broadband market could result in these caps being implemented with no one benefiting other than cable companies’ bottom lines. [More]

(Great Beyond)

Court Bars FCC From Diclosing How Much Comcast, DirecTV Pay Broadcasters

Last week’s last-minute legal battle between just about every major TV broadcaster and the FCC came to quietly disappointing conclusion this morning, with a federal appeals court refusing to allow the government to share confidential details about the mergers of Comcast and Time Warner Cable, and DirecTV and AT&T. [More]

Charter Ready To Woo Time Warner Cable Again If Comcast Fails

Charter Ready To Woo Time Warner Cable Again If Comcast Fails

Not even a year ago, Time Warner Cable was spurning the romantic advances of Charter Communications and its $37.3 billion offer of wedded bliss, all because it knew that Comcast was waiting in the wings with a more expensive proposal. But in case the Comcast/TWC marriage fails to get the blessing of federal regulators, Charter’s billionaire backer says he’s ready to be Time Warner Cable’s rebound relationship. [More]

(Mark Amsterdam)

Broadcasters Get Court To Stop Consumers From Seeing How Much Cable Companies Pay For Content

The FCC is currently mulling over whether to give its stamp of approval to two huge mergers — Comcast/Time Warner Cable and AT&T/DirecTV — and is intending to make information available to third parties about the deals that that these pay-TV giants make with broadcasters. But even though you and every other cable subscriber wants to know exactly how much Comcast pays for access to channels like ESPN, MTV, and the major networks, the broadcasters want that info kept under lock and key — and they’ve asked the court to stop it from possibly going public. [More]

(Xavier J. Peg)

NYC Mayor Raises Concerns About Comcast/TWC Merger

While 52 other mayors from around the country were recently reminded that Comcast is an important contributor to election campaigns, Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City has been busy warning the FCC that the pending merger of Comcast and Time Warner Cable is fraught with potential problems. [More]

Yet Another City Moves To Block Comcast From Taking Over Their TWC Service

Yet Another City Moves To Block Comcast From Taking Over Their TWC Service

Comcast’s plans to buy Time Warner Cable are obviously heavily under review at the federal level, and states are reviewing the merger plans with a gimlet eye as well. But thanks to the quirks of the way cable agreements developed, the cities that cable companies serve have the power to allow or block new companies from coming in and taking over. And a city in Kentucky this week became the latest potentially to throw a wrench in the grand Comcast/Time Warner Cable/Charter plan by doing just that. [More]

Antitrust Experts To FCC: Comcast/TWC Merger Is A Terrible Idea

Antitrust Experts To FCC: Comcast/TWC Merger Is A Terrible Idea

A group of antitrust experts spanning the country, from Harvard to Stanford and plenty of places in between, has asked the FCC to block the Comcast and Time Warner Cable union. In a letter, the experts urge the FCC to act to to “protect competition and consumers” by preventing the merger before it happens. [More]

(Great Beyond)

FCC Pauses Review Of Both Media Mega-Mergers Because Content Companies Won’t Share Confidential Info

The slowly-turning wheel of the approvals process for two big media mergers has temporarily ground to a halt, as the FCC today announced delays in their reviews of both AT&T’s planned acquisition of DirecTV and also the Comcast/Time Warner Cable union. The delays in both proceedings stem from the same core issue: media content companies who don’t want their rivals to learn their secrets. [More]

Justice Dept. Digging Deep “In The Weeds” Of Broadband Issues In Comcast/TWC Merger

Justice Dept. Digging Deep “In The Weeds” Of Broadband Issues In Comcast/TWC Merger

Comcast and Time Warner Cable have been making the case for their merger nearly all year. The two companies talk up their TV programming sides a lot, but most watchers know that the merger — and the future — are really all about broadband, and that market is what Comcast is poised to control on a national scale. That potential dominance has worried not only businesses and consumer advocates, but also has apparently attracted the attention of the Justice Department as well. [More]

(Christopher.V)

Senator Asks Comcast To Stick With Net Neutrality Beyond Its Legal Obligation

While its counterparts (we can’t call them competition, since that doesn’t exist) at other cable and Internet service providers have been drooling over proposed “net neutrality” rules that would allow ISPs to charge content companies for “fast lane” access to end-users, Comcast has consistently maintained that it is the only ISP to hold to the since-gutted 2010 version of neutrality (without mentioning that it’s legally obliged to follow those rules for a few more years). Now the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee is asking Comcast to stick to those rules even after it no longer has to. [More]

Another City Wants To Stop Comcast From Taking Over Cable Service

(Renee Rendler-Kaplan)

Weeks after city leaders in Lexington, KY, made it clear that they are not pleased about the promise of being passed around like a hot potato from Time Warner Cable to Comcast to Charter, the City Council of Worcester, MA, is also laying out the unwelcome mat for Comcast. [More]

(Keith Reed)

Blaming TWC’s Poor Service, City May Deny Transfer Of Cable To Comcast

Two years ago, the people of Lexington, KY, became Time Warner Cable customers when the company acquired Insight Communications. Now TWC is being bought by Comcast, meaning Lexington residents would be switched again. But it gets more complicated, as Lexington is one of the markets that Comcast would then hand over to Charter. Four different cable companies in fewer than five years has members of the Lexington city council saying “no more.” [More]

Consumer Advocates Urge Justice Dept. To Block Comcast/TWC Merger

Consumer Advocates Urge Justice Dept. To Block Comcast/TWC Merger

The FCC isn’t the only agency reviewing the Comcast/Time Warner Cable merger; the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice is all over it, too. And while the full public doesn’t get to have its riotous say with the DoJ the same way we did with the FCC, businesses and consumer advocates can file in opposition (or support). Our colleagues down the hall at Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, have now officially chimed in to ask the DoJ to watch out for the interests of consumers, and block the merger. [More]