A large coalition of media reform and consumer rights groups has written to the head of the FCC angrily protesting Comcast's proposed takeover of Time Warner Cable, just as Comcast has made its first case to the regulator that the takeover is nothing to worry about.
On Tuesday, Comcast told the FCC that the merger would not be a hindrance to competition or innovation in the cable and broadband markets. Moreover, it portrayed itself as a small fish compared to the giant sharks of such Internet competitors as Apple and Google.
In response, over 50 groups, including Free Press, the Writers Guild of America, the National Organization For Women, Consumers Union, and the California branch of Common Cause, wrote to FCC chair Tom Wheeler and Attorney General Eric Holder:
The proposed Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger would give one company enormous power over our nation’s media and communications infrastructure. This massive consolidation would position Comcast as our communications gatekeeper, giving it the power to dictate the future of numerous industries across the Internet, television and telecommunications landscape.
The Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger would give Comcast unthinkable gatekeeper power over our commercial, social and civic lives. Everyone from the biggest business to the smallest startup, from elected officials to everyday people, would have to cross through Comcast’s gates.
Comcast executives are set to make their merger case before a Senate committee on Wednesday.
Read the full letter here.