Consumer Groups Push Back on Comcast-TWC Deal

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Feb. 14 (Bloomberg) -- John Bergmayer of Public Knowledge discusses potential impact to consumers and programmers from the Comcast-Time Warner Cable deal on Bloomberg Television’s “Market Makers.”

Time warner and what it means for the consumer.

What is your biggest concern?

The biggest concern is the effect that a larger comcast could have come and not just on consumers directly, but on the rest of the medium.

On programmers, internet services and those effects would end up affecting consumers indirectly.

Do they care about the bottom line and how much is going to cost?

Regulators do care about the harm that comes to consumers.

They don't have to look to see whether your cable bill arrives.

I do know that yesterday in a conference call, comcast admitted that this merger would not result in lower prices for consumers and would not even result in cable bill acceleration slowing down.

There is a lot of harm to consumers.

Anyone who relies on internet services should worry about the market power of a single isp controls so many millions of homes.

If they start messing around with internet content, could be very disastrous.

Surely it does not help the consumer of the prices went up.

Should comcast have to say, will this will make prices go down?

When the fcc views a merger, they look to see that it merger will actually enhance the public interest.

That is the fcc standard.

Comcast has yet to show that this merger will result in positive consumer benefit, which is the standard of the fcc.

My only option in new york city as time warner and it stinks.

This will open up -- this could help it.

What is happening is your monopoly provider -- it's name is changing to comcast.

When i talk about this merger, love people wonder, why should i care?

When you look at the effect on the broader market of media and programming and internet services, it will be pretty disastrous.

These are the two largest isp's in the country.

You have to look at it from a broadband angle as well.

List talk about concessions.

Comcast has said that it is prepared to make some tom including divesting 3 million so.

His house like a big number.

In what markets?

Are we talking legacy time warner cable?

What would you like to see you go ? they're looking to get rid of customers so that they don't exceed a particular cap which a lot of people talk about.

30% of subscribers.

However, i'm concerned about their percentage of control of the broadband market and the double play bundle between tv and high-speed broadband.

What are the conditions that you want to see in order to support or not be opposed to this merger?

I don't think any concessions would work to make this merger serve the public interest.

Comcast already has a history of not following merger commitments that it agreed to in the comcast nbc merger.

They are very difficult to enforce.

Best way to make sure that it does no harm is to block the merger.

What do you want ultimately ? i want there to be more competition in the broadband market and i don't want any provider to have such dominant control over the ecosystem.

If charter had won, would you be happy ? i would not be happy, but i don't think the scope of harm would be so severe.

How to get the industry's interest in the line with what you were hoping for?

When it comes to broadband, we need net neutrality protections that are permanent and we need to make sure that there are rules in place that prevents dominant gatekeepers come abusing their market power.

What if they agreed to net neutrality and definitely?

That would be an interesting concession from them and it would be comcast, who was originally an opponent to net neutrality to admit that it serves the public interest.

Net neutrality perfections should apply to all isps.

Why don't they make sense to everyone else?

I'm somebody who hates my cable provider and bill.

Who pays you?

I don't. we are a nonprofit founded by foundations.

Our donors in the past have included comcast.


Give us an idea of who your corporate monsters are.

Work you are doing is great.

I want to get a better understanding of who is behind it.

The majority of our funding comes from rabid foundations.

Then, the corporate sponsors come from the tech industry, the telecom industry, wireless carriers -- you currently have funding from the telecom industry?

You said comcast was.

I don't have the numbers in front of me as to when they last a minute or how much they pay.

I can say that the telecom ministry is very comp located and there have been issues where i've worked with the cable industry where i support them.

It is not a black or white issue.

I takene it issue by issue.

Sitting on hold for time

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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