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The Comcast/TWC Merger Is About Controlling Information 107

An anonymous reader sends this excerpt from The Consumerist: "Comcast and proposed merger partner Time Warner Cable claim they don't compete because their service areas don't overlap, and that a combined company would happily divest itself of a few million customers to keeps its pay-TV market share below 30%, allowing other companies that don't currently compete with Comcast to keep not competing with Comcast. This narrow, shortsighted view fails to take into account the full breadth of what's involved in this merger — broadcast TV, cable TV, network technology, in-home technology, access to the Internet, and much more. In addition to asking whether or not regulators should permit Comcast to add 10-12 million customers, there is a more important question at the core of this deal: Should Comcast be allowed to control both what content you consume and how you get to consume it?"
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The Comcast/TWC Merger Is About Controlling Information

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  • Re:Right on (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 12, 2014 @11:35PM (#46737817)

    Amen. I work for a small ISP/IPTV/VoIP provider and the plain truth is this: a few big content providers take 80% of our customer's monthly cable bill. They essentially tell us how much we have to charge and what our channel package structure needs to look like. Sure they provide the illusion of choice: sure you can carry our popular channels in HD, all you need to do is add these 10 other junk channels in the same bundle and charge your customers 25 cents for each of them... Sure you can carry the Olympics, all you'll need to do is sign this 5 year contract extension with 15% price bumps each year and a one-time $5/subscriber fee this year. What are we going to do - not carry NBC? Our customers don't understand any of this and we're contractually prevented from breaking out costs in any meaningful way so they can understand how badly lopsided the power is.

    Centralizing power like this will drive everyone's prices up, whether your in their cable markets or not - because everyone is in their content market.

...there can be no public or private virtue unless the foundation of action is the practice of truth. - George Jacob Holyoake