Thursday, February 13, 2014
Comcast/TimeWarner Cable Merger: It's All About Slowing Down Content Moving to Cord Cutters
a done deal, and so it might be if their lobbyists and PR folks get to spin the story the way that they want to. The Comcast/TWC argument is that their areas of service are almost completely non-overlapping, so how could this be considered a reduction of competition? It's a simple argument that rolls of the tongue so sweetly, but ultimately it's simplistic to the point of covering up the obvious. Fewer cable companies means that there are fewer options for consumers to turn to one way or another. If, for the sake of argument, a regulator said, okay, we're going to open up market "X" in the U.S. to all cable companies, if you've got one ginormous company owning 40 percent of the U.S. market and wee little competitors left over, guess how effective that's going to be for consumer choice. At least if there's a broader array of reasonably sized companies, we'll have a better chance at meaningful competition for reaching consumers.
So, you can hunker down with a bigger Compuserve - ah, Comcast/TWC, that is - or do your shareholders a real favor and get aggressive with independent online streaming services ASAP. Myself, I'd go for door number two. If you'd like to explore what's behind that door more, let me know.