Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The Yes Lapdogs at FCC Approve Adelphia deal

MediaWeek says it best: "With regulatory approval in hand, Comcast and Time Warner are set to absorb some 5 million customers from the bankrupt Adelphia Communications and expand their presence in cities including Los Angeles, Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C." FCC Commissioner Copps spells it out: "While rescuing Adelphia from the perils of bankruptcy is laudable, the anticompetitive division of assets proposed by the Applicants is not. The swapping of media properties contemplated by these two giants has the clear potential, even the probability, of limiting competition in numerous media markets across the country. Nothing in this Order can rebut the simple truth that less competition equals higher prices. Indeed, when you step back and look at the totality of these proposed transactions, the direction here is unmistakable: this decision is about Big Media getting bigger, with consumers left holding the bag. There are those in industry trying to lull America into complacency by claiming that media industry consolidation has run its course and we needn’t worry about it any longer. This transaction proves them wrong. More than 3300 FCC approvals of media property assignment and transfer grants over the past three years prove them wrong. Believe me, this party is far from over. " The fact sheet only discusses Regional Sports Networks.

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