I believe Internet, broadband, communications, spectrum and media policies from Washington D.C. should be designed not to just benefit big cable and telecommunications companies but should actually serve the public interest. Therefore as I noted in my previous post I was glad when the Justice Department using its authority under the nation’s antitrust laws to protect competition filed suit against AT&T to deny them a spectrum monopoly in the wireless market. I was also glad to hear the FCC Chairman say that his agency which has a statutory authority to protect the public interest in its rulings for or against mergers stated they have serious concerns about the deal. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski stated that his agency’s review of the transaction between AT&T and T Mobil is still ongoing but the agency does have serious concerns about the deal’s potential anti competitive effects. So even if AT&T were to prevail in court against the Department of Justice they would likely face a new fight with the FCC.
Clearly Justice’s decision to block the merger is a victory of people powered lobbying over the corporate lobbying of AT&T and is a big win for the public interest. Of course AT&T is not going to let up it will fight Justice’s lawsuit in court and to continue to try to woo Justice to reconsider its opposition of the deal. So we have to keep up the fight. Write to or call your Congressman and Senators asking them to oppose the merger if they have not done so already. File comments in the FCC’s docket concerning the merger encouraging them to deny the merger and stand up for competition in the wireless market. Write to the Department of Justice and thank them for blocking the merger that would destroy jobs. So there’s a lot more work to do but for now let’s celebrate this win.
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