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Comcast Shareholders Greenlight Time Warner Merger

On Wednesday, Comcast held a special shareholders meeting in Philadelphia to vote on the Time Warner cable merger. The company announced that more than 99 percent of those voting supported the merger. The proposal includes issuing 2.875 shares of Comcast Class A common stock for every one share of Time Warner Cable common stock.

"The merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable is subject to various regulatory approvals and other customary conditions and also requires approval by Time Warner Cable shareholders," Comcast's press release said. "Subject to satisfaction of these conditions, the merger is expected to close in early 2015."

The news arrives after the U.S. Federal Communications Commission said that it has extended its time to file responses and oppositions for the Comcast/Time Warner merger from October 8 to October 29. The FCC has set aside 180 days to determine if the Comcast and Time Warner merger will be in the best interest of the public. As of Friday, the investigation was at day 85, and it will resume on October 29.

The Justice Department is also evaluating the possible merger to see if it is anti-competitive. Unnamed sources told Bloomberg BusinessWeek that Netflix is just one of the four companies that must fork over information to the DoJ regarding the upcoming merger. Even state regulators are involved and will vote on the merger on November 13. The New York Public Service Commission has the power to reject the deal, the report states.

During Wednesday's meeting, Comcast chief executive Brian L. Roberts said he was very excited about the merger with Time Warner Cable. He also emphasized that the two companies really don't compete with each other, and that the merger will not eliminate customer choice. Comcast is America's number one cable provider while Time Warner falls into second place.

Currently, Comcast is under fire again over customer service. A former subscriber allegedly called up customer service to complain about his account. After several calls, someone from Comcast then contacted the accounting firm that employed the disgruntled customer. The firm performed an ethics investigation and fired the customer, citing an email from Comcast that provided the conversations between the worker and a Comcast Controller.

As for the Comcast/Time Warner merger, Time Warner Cable is expected to vote on the deal on Thursday, October 9.

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  • dstarr3
    This is why America can't have nice internet.
    Reply
  • czar1020
    "Comcast chief executive Brian L. Roberts said he was very excited about the merger with Time Warner Cable. He also emphasized that the two companies really don't compete with each other, and that the merger will not eliminate customer choice."

    Exactly, because each of them have a monopoly in every area they are located.
    Reply
  • burkhartmj
    This is like the ATT/Tmo merger all over again. Hopefully it has the same outcome.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    14336322 said:
    Exactly, because each of them have a monopoly in every area they are located.
    Just like nearly all other forms of infrastructure. Duplicating infrastructure is very expensive and splitting potential revenue quickly undermines the potential return on investment so infrastructure tends towards natural monopoly.

    If major ISPs wanted to increase their profits while lowering prices, they would set their arrogance aside and merge their infrastructure to eliminate infrastructure duplication: half or possibly less of the total outside plant investments to serve the same subscriber base for about twice the overall ROI.
    Reply
  • 4ktv
    Good they will get rid of Time warner cable, Comcast has so much faster and better internet. They also have better techs that have there own laptops to test with than just leaving saying it's all your stuff that's broken.

    Reply
  • RIPPEDDRAGON
    They have been colluding from the beginning. The internet trolls of the USA must put a stop to this merger as it seems the FCC and our politicians have had their pockets lined.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    14338760 said:
    They have been colluding from the beginning.
    How? They do not serve overlapping markets and the reason for that is because it is not cost-effective to do so.

    Most types of infrastructure are a natural monopoly: natural factors make competition intrinsically inefficient and expensive, making infrastructure competition fundamentally undesirable.

    That's why most infrastructure (like roads, waterworks and power distribution) is either government-owned or tightly regulated.
    Reply
  • RIPPEDDRAGON
    14338239 said:
    14336322 said:
    Exactly, because each of them have a monopoly in every area they are located.
    Just like nearly all other forms of infrastructure. Duplicating infrastructure is very expensive and splitting potential revenue quickly undermines the potential return on investment so infrastructure tends towards natural monopoly.

    If major ISPs wanted to increase their profits while lowering prices, they would set their arrogance aside and merge their infrastructure to eliminate infrastructure duplication: half or possibly less of the total outside plant investments to serve the same subscriber base for about twice the overall ROI.

    This is why the current system is inherently flawed. If municipal fiber was run across the US we wouldn't have this problem...companies can fight over providing better services over the same infrastructure or the local governments can run it.

    Even if you want to argue with fair competition and other US capitalism b.s. Comcast and Time Warner pay off politicians to stop other companies from laying new lines in their areas.

    I have a great form letter all you have to do is fill in your name and submit it to the FCC here: http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/upload/display;

    Here is the source of the form letter: https://teksyndicate.com/forum/general-discussion/fcc-letter-1-page-version-draft/176563

    Here is a quick copy/paste version of the letter:

    From: RIPPED

    To: Chairman Tom Wheeler & the FCC Leaders

    Subject: Proposed Internet “Fast Lane” FCC Rules

    Mr. Tom Wheeler & FCC Commission,
    I am writing to you today as a ___________. I have an acute understanding of the current situation with the proposed “internet fast lane” rules and I am aware of the technical and circumstantial details around the recent Netflix/Comcast event.
    I must say that I was not expecting this from your office at this time; the proposed rules do not make sense and do not follow the FCC charter. In 2009 the FCC drafted similar rules because of the events surrounding Comcast and Comcast’s arbitrary throttling of peer-to-peer traffic; in that case the FCC lost their case when the DC district court ruled that Comcast is classified as an “information service.” Recently, the FCC finished writing the “Open Internet” rules and once again the FCC was sued by Verizon. The FCC lost their case once again – in both of these cases the court urged the FCC to reclassify these ISPs as a Title II communications company if the office of the FCC was serious about drafting rules that these companies must follow.
    I’m aware that Title II has some stringent rules and that these rules may not all be applicable to internet service providers like Verizon, AT&T and Comcast. However, I would remind you that the FCC has the power of forbearance; the office can choose what rules will be imposed. Were these internet service providers classified as “telecommunications services”, as the FCC has been encouraged to do by these two court cases, then it does not have to enforce all the rules under Title II.
    Certainly I have been surprised by these proposed “internet fast lane” rules; they were entirely unexpected at this time. I do not see how they are substantially different than the rules put forth in the previous two failed court cases. Also, I would not expect to entertain such a proposal unless and until the FCC reclassifies these ISPs as telecommunications companies under Title II.
    In point of fact, Comcast has already negotiated a “fast lane” deal with Netflix. However, Comcast is selling service tiers to customers that specify a speed (e.g. 50 megabits per second) and a byte cap (250 gigabytes, as specified in the terms-of-service). As a customer of Comcast, I may elect to use some or all of the capacity I have purchased on Netflix services.
    I am confident that should the FCC investigate the particulars of Comcast’s activities in this case, they would have an open-and-shut antitrust case. To use a telephone analogy, this is no different than a cellular telephone provider charging a call recipient "extra" to "help prevent the call from being dropped."
    This is exactly the same type of abusive conduct that the FCC tried to deal with in the court cases in 2009 and again with Verizon more recently.
    Please, halt what is being done with these “internet fast lane” rules, and simply reclassify internet service providers as Telecommunications companies under Title II of the 1996 telecommunications act. It is a faster, simpler, and more effective way to accomplish your goals.
    Sincerely,

    RIPPED

    __________________________________________
    If you are still reading here is some more information on why we have been screwed by these companies from the start: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WIOcbclh370

    Reply
  • TeamColeINC
    ^This....
    Reply
  • Raid3r
    Come on guys, ignore the facts...go for the FUD!!?!? /S

    Said every person who is going to benefit and eat their customers money so they don't have to give it back in better infrastructure.
    Reply