Thursday, December 3, 2009

Stop The Comcast-NBCU Merger!!

Cable giant Comcast and NBC Universal have just announced that they're merging to form one of the most powerful media companies in the world. Washington and Wall Street are already saying this mega-merger is a done deal. If we don't act now to stop it, we'll have even more corporate control of our media, higher prices and fewer choices.

It's a marriage made in hell, and we need a citizens' uprising to stop the merger.

Join the Uprising Against the Mega-Merger

Help us get 100,000 people to tell President Obama to make good on his campaign pledge to act "against the excessive concentration of [media] power in the hands of any one corporation, interest or small group." It's time for the president to keep his promise.

Sign our call to action - and we will deliver your demands to the president, as well as to decision makers at the Department of Justice, Federal Trade Commission and Federal Communications Commission who have the power to stop this merger.

Comcast, the nation's largest cable company and the second largest Internet provider, would merge with one of the world's biggest producers of TV shows and movies. Here's what this merger would mean for you:
Higher Prices: With Comcast in control of everything from MSNBC, Bravo and E! to Universal Pictures, they'll be able to raise prices for their competitors that will be passed on to you.

Fewer Choices: Comcast would have a near-media monopoly in some communities, controlling cable and Internet access as well as local TV stations. They could push NBC shows ahead of other local and independent voices and programs, making it even harder to find alternatives on cable.
Less Innovation: This merged goliath could control what you watch and how you watch it, starving online video competitors or making you subscribe to Comcast to watch TV on the Internet.

This merger is a dangerous attempt by media moguls to seize control of both media content and distribution, and to use this control to squeeze consumers.

Stop the Merger: Join us at

With your help, we can give consumers a voice and keep this doomed marriage from ever reaching the altar.

Josh Silver
Free Press

P.S. We need as many people to speak out as possible. Spread the word on Facebook or Twitter or forward this e-mail to your friends. We'd love to hear from them, too!

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CWA: Proposed Comcast-NBC Universal Deal Raises Serious Anti-Trust Concerns

Washington , D.C. -- The proposed merger of Comcast and NBC Universal raises real anti-trust concerns. If approved by regulators, this deal would create a mega-media company, one with the market power to determine what programs get aired and how much consumers must pay to view programming in every media outlet: cable, television and especially the Internet. This mega-company would control one out of every five viewing hours in the United States .

This mega-merger clearly spotlights the dangers of media consolidation in the Internet Age.

Comcast is not only the nation’s largest cable company, with 24 million customers, but it has 15 million Internet users and controls most must-have regional sports programming. If it takes on NBC Universal, it adds a major television network, 27 local televisions, cable channels including CNBC , MSNBC, Telemundo, Bravo, USA Network and more, plus Hulu, a growing stop especially for households under age 35.

This vertical integration of two very different companies – one controlling distribution and another controlling content – would give the merged company leverage over both in broadcast and network television and the market power to control pricing of content on the Internet. It clearly would threaten competition in the distribution of content and programming.

Comcast also has been cited for anti-democratic corporate governance processes. Comcast’s chief executive officer has super-majority voting rights at the company, despite owning just 3 percent of stock. Comcast has been criticized by investor and public interest groups for refusing to implement the one share-one vote policy that nearly all major corporations use for shareholder decisionmaking.

If Comcast is permitted to take over NBC Universal, this same undemocratic structure could be transferred to the new mega-media company, giving one person control over the dominant source of cable, television, Internet and media programming.

Comcast also has a long history of violating workers’ rights, firing workers who want union representation, refusing to bargain fairly for contracts, running aggressive campaigns to decertify unions and much more. CWA represents about 2,000 Comcast workers and about 2,500 NBC-Universal broadcast technicians and other workers.

CWA urges careful and close review of this proposed merger.

Candice Johnson
CWA Communications

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