WWL>Topics>>2-20 12:35pm Garland, cable merger

2-20 12:35pm Garland, cable merger

Feb 20, 2014|

The two largest cable companies in the world (Comcast and Time Warner) are merging. The new company will control cable, much of the internet and entertainment services. Some call it a monopoly that will increase the costs we pay for home technology. Others say it’s simply a bigger company with more to choose from. Does it excite or worry you? Garland was joined by Randolph May, President of The Free State Foundation.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

We've been throwing billions around in the old thing turning to they've from the very beginning until the cloture oriented. Hourlong discussion about -- -- paying nineteen billion dollars to paper company we have never called walks out. Kind of a texting company. -- got 450 million users adding a million people Wednesday. And FaceBook and nineteen billion -- the pace of communication. Regardless of what communications is changing warp speed. Latest changes and what we're used to and understand a little bit and the united besides my -- -- and here's the story from the news. In agreeing to -- reported by bill import Time Warner Cable Comcast hopes to create not only. And then Norman's cable television provider. But the largest broadband. Internet provider in the United States. And a -- the controls about half of all triple play services. Bundling of cable TB's broad band. Alongside Internet based telephone connections would be a huge companies. We have Barbara and ultimately with the president of the free state foundation -- offer appreciated -- I'm glad to be which -- dollar Garland -- actually much that it. But -- going better I've ever part of what you happened. It'll. -- -- I could go back screw you get into this technology. And doing. All right good idea bad side yeah. Time Warner Cable and everything under com. Well it's. Probably a good idea for their. Perspective they've they would do it I think all. Maybe a good idea as well from the perspective of of consumers. In and that's obviously. The most most important trend that we just generally take the matter to them. Initial reactions to the announcement that it that I have -- then maybe we can. We can take it from the air. And Portugal which is where where whenever there's a proposed merger of of this size. That deserves close scrutiny and I'm. Which suggested that westerners -- it was a -- and corruption are sure. It's gonna get close scrutiny about that the government and in this case that includes feet. The department of justice and the Pepsi shoot FCC this kind of do. Jurisdiction here to review these things and -- employees that. -- is problematic elbow problem. Reviewing the most productive society -- You know an important thing to understand about there's. Proposal. And that there's it's it's oftentimes. Referred to talk about at least initially -- The two largest quote cable companies -- a margin. Emerging and therefore it's almost by definition that's that's too bad doing it. It is true that Tom Porter cable and Comcast. If you think of them. You know -- traditional cable television companies have the these are the two largest professional all the way do it to think about and and a wrong way to think about this merger from there. From the get go. Because I could first of all. Comcast and Time Warner Cable they don't compete with each other in in the market I mean there's no. Dispute really about you know we -- We might wish quote cable companies competed with each other and over over build their systems but they don't. Do that so they don't compete so there's a reduction in the number of competitors in the way really to think about. There's the merger. You know promote public policy point of view our anti -- point of -- -- you know -- You know I think we'll think about what is the relevant -- and in my view that you really you know what I would call abroad and more -- Place where Tom Warner cable and Comcast. Compete with satellite. Operators. On the one hand touched DirecTV. And and dish. Dish TV. They compete with that with -- -- what we used of course don't call the telephone companies AT&T. Irrational and the other. The other telephone companies and increasingly. And they shouldn't be discounted early in the wallets providers. Because more and more people or really. You know accessing -- -- on there are support to accomplish more votes there. Tablets and -- We can get into numbers but got a lot of affection figures protest that's that should realities. That one passed it -- -- with the main. You know the point I think from that the -- is that. That you have to think about. The broadband marketplace. Structures described it when you do there. In my view and I have been doing communications. More policy for about 35 years. I'm no monopoly went -- but RC one it was at the FCC yet. -- late seventies and talking straight. You know without. Much doubt that -- AT&T you'll we -- the belt system was a monopoly at that point exercise. You know dominant market power I think in in the broadband marketplace that are described. Garland these these we have a market that is. It is sufficiently. Competitive at this point that the regulators have to be careful about not. Not regulating. Or in this case you know preventing. Consolidations. In effect. Are rational arcing from an economic. Point -- -- -- that a market that marketplace. Courses for exchanging huge dynamic. Our -- about the record just there's. -- stop for a start and it's. You know that that is its news indisputable that the cable. You know providers market Comcast they've they've been losing. Their video search operation. Early. Fairly significantly over the pressure or use satellite systems have been gaining you know I hate to be subscribers and and that the telephone companies which back into cells and what. At that point but he essentially -- does he wrote that and and middle and paid TV subscribers. You have marketplace that. -- -- -- be one you know the one we think about it sort of talks table. Putting aside the the question of monopoly. It itself like two horrible companies that are getting rid decline -- to really big. Horrible company oil -- I -- Well what effect pushed a lot. I'm not familiar with. Statistics and you don't wanna. Argue argue about them and not just pick which Tuesday. This being true. This happen you know an area in which -- -- -- Comcast service which used to be considered. Pretty bad probably six years ago it could be that hours. Considered much much better -- -- The more fundamental. Point really. -- it is in most places now it's not true everywhere there are still places where. Where it you don't have as many tours -- short financial pleasure you only have one choice but a lot of places -- Of course if you don't like Comcast you -- which -- -- -- Russian word we're. You war I think it maybe eighteen AT&T. And people people do that you know it's pixels it's not completely. Trouble free -- but. But you can you can you can switch and it's -- To see necessarily. Help this particular departure frankly news did you know it's just assure that you got port. Children's quality. I think in fact what Comcast which I think they did say this whether it helps the merger bid. Of course. They are scary old and because so quickly what they've done and investing and and in in new technology more bandwidth. They've made tremendous. Investment spenders but a lot of billions of dollars sort of that which. No one disputes that that that third guy and a actually be a position to upgrade -- water tables Childress which which frankly. Also you know there's not -- indisputable and in most curious somewhat obliged. Time warped tour likes Comcast about not talked about the number of customer complaints -- I just don't have that data but I'm talking about things likes the you know that number of of different Childress is survivable. These set top box you know -- -- restrictions introduced. In the past year at new. Actually -- set top box are not forget that. -- -- the excellent entertainment. Operating system that is it's news quite advantage so you know I think that did. What they would claim and I think crucial. Mary this is that the economies of scale probably realized world. You know enable them to provide. Better better sure urged that we haven't -- -- but I don't think the merger itself was going to be the place where. Anyone's gonna get that the east -- asterisk placed source that's going to be done. Other regulatory for up properly. I got a couple of messages from losers it's an idea of the FCC. Back in the seventies allowed Rupert mart on to a bile decisions one of which had never been allowed before and they weren't real crazy about how that turns out. Is is that something you're given where we have -- gonna put down their guard on this side putting and says well. Politically a lot of money powerful companies split -- let -- okay. I don't -- so you know I think obviously if people were to look at it intends. Do if they want crucial resource 65 it's it's you know just the option when. -- -- example if you don't -- country over sort of talked about much but. But when AOL Time Warner. Urged that was back in the year to tell you probably were called out. And hours following. These things closely and there was a tremendous hue and cry. From. All the consumer represented just most of which are our. You know. You know after -- there's merger is that if that merger were allowed to go through. That that would be the end of the Internet like we know it and accommodation of AOL com war. Would Ctrl+Alt. Or communications and Internet studio and and so forth well what what -- what happened well war. I got you -- Godfrey and roping loosens your local Michael weed through past thank you for the -- in the expertise we got -- the side of that I appreciate it. -- --