Comcast/TWC wedding opposition is growing

By on Sep, 8 2014 with Comment 1

No!After a seven-month pre-wedding honeymoon, the New York Post reports that rival media companies are beginning to voice reasons to shoot down the proposed merger of Comcast and Time Warner Cable.

According to the Post’s Clair Atkinson, the predominant objection to date has been the merged entity getting “most favored nation” status, or an inside track to the best prices with other companies it deals with.

Its control of internet access is one of the areas in which concerns are being raised. Long a concern of Netflix, others are worried about what Comcast might do absent strict regulatory oversight.

The combined Comcast/TWC universe of 33M+ households could make or break program services seeking carriage. If Comcast says no, the entire channel may be a no-go. And even if they are able to establish a presence minus Comcast, their lack of access to those 33M+ homes is going to severely hamper their advertising efforts.

Finally, many believe that Comcast will have too much power when it comes to sports programming. With the NFL, NHL, the Olympics and numerous regional sports channels in its stable, it could be in a position to make onerous demands of one type or another of its competition with denial of carriage its enforcement stick.

RBR-TVBR observation: For the sake of comprehensiveness let’s add the Sinclair objection: That Comcast’s NBC could demand higher reverse compensation of a local NBC affiliate, and then turn around and deny it the cash it needs to pay the higher reverse compensation by playing hardball on local retransmission consent fees. All kinds of mischief are possible when one gigantic powerful company is both the supplier and the distributor for a much smaller company.

 

About The Author: RBR+TVBR has been reporting on the business of broadcasting for nearly three decades. Beholden to no one, it is independently owned.

  1. It HAS to be obvious to everyone that the only people who will really benefit are the owners/shareholders and executives of these two companies. How merging the two companies considered the worst companies in America can make them better is beyond me. And if the deal goes through, they will have to spin off markets to a new corporation that will instantly be the 5th largest cable company in the US, and, it will be 66% owned by shareholders of Comcast.

    I’ll never understand how this deal has gotten this far.