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Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2011-09-01 15:00
The DOJ lawsuit against the AT&T/TMobile merger has many serious flaws that will make it difficult for the DOJ to meet its burden of proof in court that this merger is anti-competitive.
Importantly, if the DOJ ultimately cannot prove this merger is anti-competitive in a court of law, that official legal decision would make it legally difficult for the FCC to block the merger on competition grounds under the FCC's public interest standard, especially given that the merger would bring more broadband speed more quickly to more Americans, and create jobs, which the FCC's claims are their top public interest priorities.
I. Summary of Top Ten Flaws in DOJ's Case
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2011-08-03 12:40
FreePress with its "all complaints all the time" approach to advocacy has been caught once again "crying wolf" when there was no real problem or threat.
FreePress also continues to cry wolf about its spurious tethering" complaint against Verizon because users are prevented from unauthorized tethering of additional devices trying to bypass users' terms of service agreement.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2011-08-01 15:25
In the end, the U.S. Government is highly-likely to approve the AT&T/T-Mobile merger, despite the significant opposition, because of three over-riding realities: 1) market/financial realities, 2)DOJ legal/precedent realities, and 3) FCC public-interest realities.
I. Market Reality:
T-Mobile's leadership and owners have decided that they are unable and unwilling to invest what is necessary in order to compete going forward in the American 4G wireless market, and given that fundamental premise, the AT&T/T-Mobile merger is the optimal market outcome for T-Mobile's customers and for competition.
So the key baseline fact grounding the DOJ/FCC's decision processes here, is that T-Mobile's leaders/funders are effectively exiting this business one way or another long term via merger, sale or benign neglect.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2011-07-26 17:44
Netflix continues to throw stones at the common economic practice of usage-based pricing, to which broadband carriers are naturally migrating, all while Netflix stands inside a glass house filled with mis-managed usage pricing practices.
Netflix as Stone Thrower:
In a concerted campaign for net neutrality regulation that would ban broadband usage caps or pricing, Netflix has generated a:
Netflix as Glass House:
FCC Denies the Effective Wireless Competition Staring it in the Face -- Internet Competition Series Part IIISubmitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2011-06-27 23:47
In another blow to its competition policy credibility and objectivity, the FCC's 308 page, 15th Wireless Competition Report, amazingly reached no conclusion about whether the wireless market was effectively competitive, despite overwhelming evidence of effective competition throughout the report and a dearth of evidence in the report of any discernible anti-competitive issues that would suggest the wireless market was somehow not effectively competitive.
If only the FCC absorbed the significance of the data compiled in their own report, the FCC would conclude that the wireless market was effectively competitive.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2011-06-14 19:10
If reports are true that the FCC is planning on claiming in its upcoming wireless competition report that the FCC cannot conclude that the U.S. wireless market is effectively competitive, then the FCC is neither "data-driven" as it claims, nor in touch with market reality.
If the FCC is a wireless competition denier in the upcoming wireless competition report, despite the overwhelming factual evidence to the contrary, the FCC seriously risks its going-forward credibility with Congress, the Courts, industry and the public.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2011-06-07 17:51
The Rural Cellular Association’s opposition to the AT&T/T-Mobile acquisition puts a spotlight on the un-sustainability of the analog rural cellular model that is on the wrong side of broadband change.
Importantly, most of the RCA’s problems exist completely separate from this transaction.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2011-06-06 16:00
As a regular reader of Steve Pearlstein's Washington Post's business column, I was dismayed at the consistent pro-regulation frame of Sunday's piece on the AT&T-T-Mobile acquisition: "The Revenge of the Baby Bells."
The hallmark of longstanding bipartisan competition policy has been that if market players have the freedom to succeed or fail at differentiating, innovating and investing to meet consumers' rapidly evolving needs, market forces can maximize consumer welfare much better than FCC regulators can.
Thus it is dismaying that Mr. Pearlstein crafted a false choice in his column: "...stick with the competitive, lightly-regulated model and... block a merger... or it could acknowledge... the "telephone" market is a natural oligopoly... and... requires much stronger government regulation."
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2011-05-26 18:19
FreePress' radical anti-business, anti-capitalism politics lead it to make up or contort facts and analogies in order to promote its world view of a publicly-owned and regulated Internet commons.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2011-05-26 09:51
The FCC's Open Internet Order is even more likely to be overturned in court than before because the FCC's extraordinary delay in publishing its December net neutrality regulations has oddly moved the FCC's April Data Roaming Order to the front of the line of cases challenging the FCC's overall legal authority to regulate broadband.
Consequently both cases are now more likely to be heard in the FCC-unfriendly D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.