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FCC report says AT&T, T-Mobile submitted flawed information regarding merger

post #1 of 37
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A recently released staff report from the Federal Communications Commission claims AT&T and T-Mobile failed to prove that their proposed merger was in the public interest, even noting that the carriers had submitted inaccurate information to the commission.

AT&T and T-Mobile parent company Deutsche Telekom announced in March a $39 billion deal that would see the No. 2 and No. 4 U.S. carriers merge. The deal was quickly met with regulatory opposition, with the Department of Justice going so far as to sue to block the acquisition in August.

Last week, the FCC weighed in when Chairman Julius Genachowski called for an administrative hearing to address the merger. Genachowski also expressed his belief that the deal was against the public interest.

AT&T and T-Mobile responded by withdrawing their application with the FCC, ostensibly to focus on the DoJ lawsuit.

The agency on Tuesday formally accepted the applicants' withdrawal and released the findings of its staff analysis. The commission's staff report found "significant competitive concerns" surrounding the transaction and raised "substantial and material" questions about the potential effects on roaming, wholesale, and resale services, backhaul and handsets. The staff also disagreed with the applicants' claim that the merger would lead to lower prices while also creating more jobs.

After a thorough analysis of the potential effects of the merger, the commission's staff maintained that the applicants "have failed to carry their burden of proving that the proposed transaction, on balance, will serve the public interest."



"Staff further finds that the bulk of the Applicants' proffered benefits are inadequately supported by the data supplied, achievable through means other than the elimination of a competitor, or otherwise not cognizable under the Commission's public interest standard," the report concluded.

FCC commissioners spoke out in support of the staff's findings. Commissioner Mignon L. Clyburn said in a statement on Tuesday that the agency released the report in order to "promote federal agency transparency" and to allow outside parties, which have spent "considerable time and resources" responding to information requests, to see the completed analysis.

She added that the report could also be helpful to AT&T and T-Mobile as they reevaluate their application. The carriers have said they are continuing to pursue" the acquisition and plan to resubmit an application to the FCC.

"Despite repeated claims that this transaction will be a significant job creator, the staff, after thorough review, could make no such finding," Commissioner Michael J. Copps wrote in a statement regarding the report.

Copps also voiced concerns that the acquisition of T-Mobile would eliminate a carrier targeting "budget-conscious consumers," potentially pricing out lower-income customers. According to him, AT&T had provided "no guarantee that the new entity will continue to serve this population."

The commissioner went on to discourage AT&T and T-Mobile from resubmitting its application. "I would hope the withdrawal is not a strategic gambit along the road to resubmission of this or a similar application in the months ahead," he said.

However, the Associated Press reports that AT&T's top lobbyist, Jim Cicconi, was troubled by the FCC's decision to release the report.

"This report is not an order of the FCC and has never been voted on. It is simply a staff draft that raises questions of fact that were to be addressed in an administrative hearing, a hearing which will not now take place," he said. "It has no force or effect under law, which raises questions as to why the FCC would choose to release it."

Shortly after the acquisition was announced this spring, reports emerged that the carriers would face opposition from the FCC. "There's no way the chairman's office rubber-stamps this transaction. It will be a steep climb to say the least," an agency official told The Wall Street Journal off the record.

AT&T now appears to be preparing for the worst. The company announced last week that it will take a $4 billion charge this quarter in case it has to pay fees to Deutsche Telekom should the deal fall through. AT&T is said to have agreed to a $3 billion break-up fee and the possible forfeiture of "several billion dollars" worth of wireless spectrum allotments.
post #2 of 37
Really. Who would have guessed this wouldn't have benefited the people by taking away competition
post #3 of 37
I'm glad that the FCC disclosed the finding because I believe AT&T withdrew to keep it from the public. I don't use AT&T mainly because they have never treated their customers fair. I have Verizon and they aren't any better but I still need a cell phone.
post #4 of 37
So if T-Mobile continues to lose share and Deutsche Telekom decides to part them out or scuttle the entire operation, how would that help competition?
post #5 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

So if T-Mobile continues to lose share and Deutsche Telekom decides to part them out or scuttle the entire operation, how would that help competition?

They can be brought by company who will take over the brand. AT&T was trying to buy the customers. But if you have been reading the news t mobile has been adding customers lately
post #6 of 37
Remember Xingular? ATT bought them. And where is Xingular now? Xingular was the first iPhones carrier. I would suspect that ATT has similar hunger pains for T-Mobile. I wonder, if ATT buys T-Mobile will T-Mobile cease to exist eventually?

Maybe there is a reason why Apple never made an iPhone for T-Mobile. Maybe they saw the merger coming.

I would bet that Verizon is lobbying in DC to get this deal with ATT and T-Mobile 86'd.
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post #7 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Remember Xingular? ATT bought them. And where is Xingular now? Xingular was the first iPhones carrier. I would suspect that ATT has similar hunger pains for T-Mobile. I wonder, if ATT buys T-Mobile will T-Mobile cease to exist eventually?

Maybe there is a reason why Apple never made an iPhone for T-Mobile. Maybe they saw the merger coming.

I would bet that Verizon is lobbying in DC to get this deal with ATT and T-Mobile 86'd.

I never heard of Xingular.

Cingular which was formed by SBC and bellsouth (which were baby bells) bought AT&T wireless then took back the old AT&T name.
post #8 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Remember Xingular? ATT bought them. And where is Xingular now? Xingular was the first iPhones carrier. I would suspect that ATT has similar hunger pains for T-Mobile. I wonder, if ATT buys T-Mobile will T-Mobile cease to exist eventually?

Maybe there is a reason why Apple never made an iPhone for T-Mobile. Maybe they saw the merger coming.

I would bet that Verizon is lobbying in DC to get this deal with ATT and T-Mobile 86'd.

Actually, AT&T didn't buy Cingular. It was singular who bought AT&T, which in turn, turned into SBC Global. SBC Global then bought AT&T and rename themselves AT&T. It's really confusing, but the PARENT AT&T (Ma Bell) company died many years ago and one of its little ones (Baby Bells) took over the parent company and took over the name as well. AT&T today is a result of many complicated purchases of many different companies.
post #9 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sector7G View Post

But if you have been reading the news t mobile has been adding customers lately

Their last quarterly report had them gain 126,000 customers, but that's after losses of 129,000 customers in the first 2 quarters. Last year they lost 23,000 in the 4th quarter. With the iPhone 4S release, and Sprint added as an iPhone carrier, I doubt their 4th quarter numbers will be much different than 2010, but that's speculation on my part.
post #10 of 37
This was neat in a broader sense because the US hasn't been enforcing our anti-trust laws for many years. This merger was so obviously textbook illegal that finally somebody woke up after decades of slumber. I come from the airline industry which was studied in beautiful sophistication by economists in the 1970s-80s. As were railroads. The math, and the laws, on monopoly are nothing new and people will always reach for the precious. Either the govt is there to slap their hand away, or they get ahold of the precious and make their money. The richest man in the world is Carlos Slim, who runs the Mexican cell phone business. Food for thought
post #11 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by ufwa View Post

I never heard of Xingular.

Cingular which was formed by SBC and bellsouth (which were baby bells) bought AT&T wireless then took back the old AT&T name.

Ok lets get real technical. cingular used the X in their name. Xingular. Ok do you understand now? Sorry you must have missed it.
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post #12 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

So if T-Mobile continues to lose share and Deutsche Telekom decides to part them out or scuttle the entire operation, how would that help competition?

Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

Their last quarterly report had them gain 126,000 customers, but that's after losses of 129,000 customers in the first 2 quarters. Last year they lost 23,000 in the 4th quarter. With the iPhone 4S release, and Sprint added as an iPhone carrier, I doubt their 4th quarter numbers will be much different than 2010, but that's speculation on my part.


http://www.t-mobile.com/company/Inve...iewArchive=Yes
t- mobile financial statements are posted on their website in PDF. Profits are down but they are not in the red.
post #13 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Ok lets get real technical. cingular used the X in their name. Xingular. Ok do you understand now? Sorry you must have missed it.

Didn't they had that awful orange X logo that looked like someone fell off a building and splatter all over the sidewalk?
post #14 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwik View Post

This was neat in a broader sense because the US hasn't been enforcing our anti-trust laws for many years. This merger was so obviously textbook illegal that finally somebody woke up after decades of slumber. I come from the airline industry which was studied in beautiful sophistication by economists in the 1970s-80s. As were railroads. The math, and the laws, on monopoly are nothing new and people will always reach for the precious. Either the govt is there to slap their hand away, or they get ahold of the precious and make their money. The richest man in the world is Carlos Slim, who runs the Mexican cell phone business. Food for thought

Wow, I can't believe you spoke. Pray tell, what exactly IS the state of each of those industries today? Geez, I can't imagine that the utter failure in both these segments could have anything to do with over zealous government meddling, over taxation, and over regulation now could it?
post #15 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljocampo View Post

I'm glad that the FCC disclosed the finding because I believe AT&T withdrew to keep it from the public. I don't use AT&T mainly because they have never treated their customers fair. I have Verizon and they aren't any better but I still need a cell phone.

Not only is verizon customer {non} service less palatable than horse shit, but I daresay their clearly superior network is not as glorious as it once was when compared today with At&t's. The latter has spent tens of billions of dollars over the last 4 years building out their network, and it's pretty clear today that it is paying off.

Seriously, the inane asshats at Verizon are about as praiseworthy as Comcast's imbecilic blowhards. After 8 long years of customer disservice with V, I left and suffered through the early years with the iPhone on AT&T. 5 years hence, all I can say is AT&T has me as a customer for a very long time if they keep treating me as well as they have thus far. Oh, and the service is pretty darn solid these days too.
post #16 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sector7G View Post

They can be brought by company who will take over the brand. AT&T was trying to buy the customers. But if you have been reading the news t mobile has been adding customers lately

I agree with F1Ferrari; by intervening with the free market system the FCC has now proved itself to be the savior of the masses - protecting us from a monopolistic environment where higher prices were inevitable, and job losses apparently guaranteed. In the mean time T-Mobile hemorrhages post-paying subscribers, and adds a few prepaid numbers to redeem their figures somewhat (a somewhat pitiful figure if I remember correctly), and has blatantly decried no intentions of developing their current network - allowing all that precious spectrum go to waste. A little further back in the gallery, MVNO's like tracfone, who are extremely dependent on AT&T's network start recalculating the amounts of leverage they have at the bargaining table for spectrum with the big blue carrier, seeing that AT&T will obviously have less.
In short, job losses will be imminent anyway the way T-Mobile is currently faring. The low cost providers AT&T are providing with spectrum will no longer be low cost due to AT&T's spectrum shortage. DT's worded claim that they won't invest in T-Mobile means a whole lot of spectrum goes to waste.
post #17 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by macwise View Post

Wow, I can't believe you spoke. Pray tell, what exactly IS the state of each of those industries today? Geez, I can't imagine that the utter failure in both these segments could have anything to do with over zealous government meddling, over taxation, and over regulation now could it?

Given the fact that other countries have the same issue without the American "meddling" you state, given the fact that oil went up massively since 1970 and given the fact that American railroads haven't exactly been given much priority government-wise, as compared to Japan, Germany, China or France (Shinkansen, ICE, TGV, etc)... yes, it could have nothing to do with such highly questionable reasons.

It could even be argued that insufficient regulation from the US govt is actually at fault.

My personal belief is that transportation industries being highly critical to a nation's productivity, should be highly subsidized, if not nationalized altogether. It should also be heavily audited. This works for other sectors, such as health or communications. Having the iPhone is not a life necessity. Being reachable cheaply might save your life. Hence, there should be a solution, either a "low cost" heavily subsidized plan, which is more of a social-liberal solution, or a national governmental agency offering the service, which is more of a communistic solution.

Both ways, the problem you refer to is "overmeddling" where the reality is that common people are not served properly and profits are skyrocketing for a while for some rich people, before entire industries die out for lack of research/investment. Those should be pushed by governement, because relying on Steve Jobs-like CEO's all over corporate America...'s not gonna work.

Social Capitalist, dreamer and wise enough to know I'm never going to grow up anyway... so not trying anymore.

 

http://m.ign.com/articles/2014/07/16/7-high-school-girls-are-kickstarting-their-awa...

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Social Capitalist, dreamer and wise enough to know I'm never going to grow up anyway... so not trying anymore.

 

http://m.ign.com/articles/2014/07/16/7-high-school-girls-are-kickstarting-their-awa...

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post #18 of 37
"This report is not an order of the FCC and has never been voted on. It is simply a staff draft that raises questions of fact that were to be addressed in an administrative hearing, a hearing which will not now take place," he said. "It has no force or effect under law, which raises questions as to why the FCC would choose to release it."


I think he brought up a legitimate point. That was confidential information the FCC threw out there for public consumption. Is the US government going to do that with your and my confidential information, too? I like to think they won't but events like this make me less certain.
post #19 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"Staff further finds that the bulk of the Applicants' proffered benefits are inadequately supported by the data supplied, achievable through means other than the elimination of a competitor, or otherwise not cognizable under the Commission's public interest standard," the report concluded.

Couldn't the same be said of the government's budget or other governmental programs like Health Care, Social Security, etc.? Are not these 'proffered benefits inadequately supported by the data supplied'?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

FCC commissioners spoke out in support of the staff's findings.

But who evaluates the staff's findings to ensure it is correct? Really, one expects to believe something government says whether it comes from the politician, staffers, regulators, and such. Didn't politicians, based upon "findings" of staffers, state that their were no problems with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the housing industry???

Just say'n. Same Sad Song! I'm always leery of what comes out of politicians/bureaucrats mouths.
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post #20 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dmerit View Post

The low cost providers AT&T are providing with spectrum will no longer be low cost due to AT&T's spectrum shortage. DT's worded claim that they won't invest in T-Mobile means a whole lot of spectrum goes to waste.

This has been refuted time and time again. AT&T has no spectrum shortage and is not even close to running out. Will you get this simple fact straight....
post #21 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post


I would bet that Verizon is lobbying in DC to get this deal with ATT and T-Mobile 86'd.

Quite the opposite. Less competition down to a duopoly means they can fix and raise prices even more.
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post #22 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post

"This report is not an order of the FCC and has never been voted on. It is simply a staff draft that raises questions of fact that were to be addressed in an administrative hearing, a hearing which will not now take place," he said. "It has no force or effect under law, which raises questions as to why the FCC would choose to release it."


I think he brought up a legitimate point. That was confidential information the FCC threw out there for public consumption. Is the US government going to do that with your and my confidential information, too? I like to think they won't but events like this make me less certain.


I think you should dig through their site. While this happens to be a high profile case dealing with public airwaves, much of what goes through the FCC becomes public information. Heck your local radio station can't install a new light bulb on it's tower without it being public record.
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post #23 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Ok lets get real technical. cingular used the X in their name. Xingular. Ok do you understand now? Sorry you must have missed it.

That was never the case throughout their entire history. It does, however, seem to be a name that people complaining about the service used, but it was never used in their name by them (or anyone else with any real power) as a company.



Quote:
Originally Posted by lightstriker View Post

Didn't they had that awful orange X logo that looked like someone fell off a building and splatter all over the sidewalk?

See above.

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There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

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post #24 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by zeromeus View Post

Actually, AT&T didn't buy Cingular. It was singular who bought AT&T, which in turn, turned into SBC Global. SBC Global then bought AT&T and rename themselves AT&T. It's really confusing, but the PARENT AT&T (Ma Bell) company died many years ago and one of its little ones (Baby Bells) took over the parent company and took over the name as well. AT&T today is a result of many complicated purchases of many different companies.

This reminds me of the AT&T History video. Enjoy.
post #25 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by thataveragejoe View Post

I think you should dig through their site. While this happens to be a high profile case dealing with public airwaves, much of what goes through the FCC becomes public information. Heck your local radio station can't install a new light bulb on it's tower without it being public record.

I'm sure AT&T and Deutche Telekom are not concerned about disclosing info about light bulbs on towers. Pricing, supplier contracts, market share, and factors which influence all of those are certainly confidential info which they don't want Verizon, Sprint, etc. to see and are given to the government under that premise. It's the government's responsibility to keep it so. Notice how when Apple files a new device with the FCC it isn't made public until approved? Would Apple like the government to blab all the details of the next iPhone long before it's released?
post #26 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by macwise View Post

Wow, I can't believe you spoke. Pray tell, what exactly IS the state of each of those industries today? Geez, I can't imagine that the utter failure in both these segments could have anything to do with over zealous government meddling, over taxation, and over regulation now could it?

Arg,... here we go again with the "any tax or regulation is bad" line again.

No. No the Failure, if you can call it that of Railroad and the Airline industries -- if you can call them that. Was due to DE-Regulation and the passage of time and technology.

A rail-road only has a few tracks in any town - so it's a natural monopoly for a location. Do we HAVE TO argue about the problems with Monopolies? So, you have to REGULATE a train service if there is no good alternative. If you take ten seconds, you might find historical evidence of PRICE FIXING.

Big Oil, or in this case Standard Oil, kind of took control of Train systems by controlling the cost of their fuel. Then with the profits and the diminished wealth of the Train system, the took control of it and then bought up a lot of trolly cars and made sure that Trucks drove the deliveries the last mile, and pushed a dependency on Cars. It's been a LONG time since I've read up on the history there -- so a lot of the details are sketchy, but it was more "Free Market Capitalists" eating their own and controlling prices -- not very "efficient" unless you are the Gazillionaire.

Who knows, maybe the railroad tycoons just moved on to another technology to take advantage of. But "Big Government" did nothing to stand in the way. LATER, however, when rational people got in charge again, Standard Oil was broken up -- but that was AFTER the damage was done to inexpensive transit in cities and between them on trains and trollies.

We spend so much more keeping a lot of pavement smooth than we ever did on our train system -- nothing brings forced scarcity like Free Markets.

The Airline industry was probably destined to have a hard time. But you must have forgotten the de-regulation of the industry and the breaking of the Air Traffic Control unions during the Reagan era, right? Now we have "air line pilots" in some cities who cannot afford room and board and fly planes for about $30,000 in wages. Meanwhile, we have to brown-bag the Lunch as passengers. That is ENTIRELY the free market at work.

>> Does anyone miss Standard Oil, Ma Bell who you had to RENT the phone from, or the Rail Road monopolies anyway? The Buggy Whip and Horse Carriage industry ALSO took a nose dive at some point -- but the main concern should be if people moved on and got jobs -- not whether an industry survived.


If government got involved in trains however, we could probably have a high speed rail system, save energy, and most citizens could make it from California to New York in 8 hours for the price of a Bus ticket. But hey, we aren't about efficiency or making lives better -- let's make sure that AT&T and T-Mobile can monopolize cell phones so that we can pay through the nose and never get better service, while "Free Market" acolytes tell us how much WORSE it would be with some regulations.

NOBODY is suggesting that Government give us our Cell Phone system -- but Government is SUPPOSED to prevent monopolies that can manipulate the market. Whether this BENEFITS T-Mobile or AT&T stock holders should not be a moments interest of our government, nor does it "create jobs."
post #27 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwik View Post

This was neat in a broader sense because the US hasn't been enforcing our anti-trust laws for many years.

Care to support that? Monopolies are not always illegal.

Quote:
This merger was so obviously textbook illegal that finally somebody woke up after decades of slumber.

There is no such thing as "textbook" illegal. There are many caveats. Clearly, the FCC believes this will not have a positive impact on competition.

Quote:


I come from the airline industry which was studied in beautiful sophistication by economists in the 1970s-80s. As were railroads. The math, and the laws, on monopoly are nothing new and people will always reach for the precious. Either the govt is there to slap their hand away, or they get ahold of the precious and make their money. The richest man in the world is Carlos Slim, who runs the Mexican cell phone business. Food for thought

The government should not be slapping anyone's hand unless they aim to have an illegal monopoly. Overall, I'd agree this merger is not good for competition because it reduces choice dramatically. Still, it's not clear cut.
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post #28 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fake_William_Shatner View Post

...

If government got involved in trains however, we could probably have a high speed rail system, save energy, and most citizens could make it from California to New York in 8 hours for the price of a Bus ticket. But hey, we aren't about efficiency or making lives better -- let's make sure that AT&T and T-Mobile can monopolize cell phones so that we can pay through the nose and never get better service, while "Free Market" acolytes tell us how much WORSE it would be with some regulations.

NOBODY is suggesting that Government give us our Cell Phone system -- but Government is SUPPOSED to prevent monopolies that can manipulate the market. Whether this BENEFITS T-Mobile or AT&T stock holders should not be a moments interest of our government, nor does it "create jobs."

For a trillion dollars we likely could get from NYC to California in a short time though far longer than 8 hours. Oh, that's after a million NIMBY lawsuits are resolved so add 15 years to how long you think it might take to do this. For those who don't live in New York or California (or on line in between), how much of YOUR money do you want to contribute toward this?

Regarding US railroads in general, they are more steadily profitable than at any time in history and are regarded as the most efficient movers of freight in the world. Most cite deregulation of the industry for providing the environment where this was achieved.
post #29 of 37
This is a side show in a circus. The main ring contains the FCC properly staffed with ex-industry hacks, lobbyists greasing the skids and corrupt congressmen passing directives to maintain a closed market.

Surrounding the main ring are walled gardens of incompatible technologies and frequencies, pipelines owned by service providers and mnvo's tied to pricing structures determined by the pipeline owner (oops, their competitors) rigged to ensure the continuation of lousy, overpriced service.

Congratulations America, you have the best government money can buy.
post #30 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post

I'm sure AT&T and Deutche Telekom are not concerned about disclosing info about light bulbs on towers. Pricing, supplier contracts, market share, and factors which influence all of those are certainly confidential info which they don't want Verizon, Sprint, etc. to see and are given to the government under that premise. It's the government's responsibility to keep it so. Notice how when Apple files a new device with the FCC it isn't made public until approved? Would Apple like the government to blab all the details of the next iPhone long before it's released?

While my point is true, Light bulbs were simply a metaphor for the amount of info that is made public. You made and answered your own question. Those documents like testing for an upcoming phone are submitted with an express written confidentiality agreement until x date. And even then, some pieces ARE made public before release. I find no such document appended here from my quick searching. This is the legal realm. There are NO assumptions or premise, it either is or isn't. It's actually the government's responsibility to MAKE things public (FOIA) unless noted/required otherwise...which tends to be the case these days.

Rest assured if there was some illegal act here AT&T would have filed a lawsuit faster than you can think it. They didn't, instead they whined over their disappointment. So either, it was bound to become public eventually, or they dropped the ball in requesting what was to be kept for review only.
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post #31 of 37
The government was wrong to release confidential information. Further, everything the FCC released was editorial, opinion, and based on anecdotal evidence at best. Incompetence at best, conspiratorial government scandal at worst.

That being said, I'll counter with my own (well thought out) opinion:

I, as a consumer (& loyal ATT customer), would be best served with the merger. I would love to be able to go to NYC, and other large cities served by T-Mobile, and make use of the better spectrum I would receive from the merger in these crowded cities. I would love to have the lower prices ATT will offer having more spectrum.

I will not be served well, if ATT is blocked from building out spectrum in these saturated areas. ATT is trying to serve their customers by obtaining spectrum, this is in the public good.

It will not be in the public's best interest if T-Mobile goes out of business. It's going out of business, because it too can't build out it's spectrum (governments fault again) and therefore must attract customers on low price alone (which equals less profits). It will reflect badly on the government when these jobs are lost.

With new spectrum and more bandwidth, this will actually lower prices in the long run. Since bandwidth is finite, it is subject to basic economic laws: More quantity = lower price. Limited quantity = higher price. Look at any commodity, and you'll see this is true (even where the gov gets involved with tariffs or subsidies this proves true).

Monopoly? In this case, the only monopoly is the government and municipalities that make it near impossible to build out new spectrum. Tell me, who can come in a provide the competition needed to supposedly lower prices? No one until policies change. T-Mobile is not providing any meaningful competition to ATT or Verizon. Verizon and Sprint want to block, because the merger will actually provide MORE competition. Why? Because ATT will able to lower prices with the new spectrum, while providing more premium services. This will put pressure on Verizon & ATT to match price, quality, or both.

In this case, the merger is clearly in the public interests good, regardless of the carrier you have.

Atlas Shrugged.
post #32 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Copps also voiced concerns that the acquisition of T-Mobile would eliminate a carrier targeting "budget-conscious consumers," potentially pricing out lower-income customers. According to him, AT&T had provided "no guarantee that the new entity will continue to serve this population."

This statement is folly. Businesses serve no one, unless they are profitable. Businesses job is to make money, not provide free services. They make profit, precisely by providing what customers want to buy.

Government's job is not to set prices, products, or services. They are supposed to provide rules that give promote a level playing field, that is all.

I remember when we didn't have cell phones, now it's become a government entitlement? What do we want, a government bailout of T-Mobile just so we can create another subsidy?

Another boondoggle & government ponzi scheme.
post #33 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post

For a trillion dollars we likely could get from NYC to California in a short time though far longer than 8 hours. Oh, that's after a million NIMBY lawsuits are resolved so add 15 years to how long you think it might take to do this. For those who don't live in New York or California (or on line in between), how much of YOUR money do you want to contribute toward this?

Regarding US railroads in general, they are more steadily profitable than at any time in history and are regarded as the most efficient movers of freight in the world. Most cite deregulation of the industry for providing the environment where this was achieved.


I can't wait until fascism goes out of style....

... so many excuses for NOT doing the right thing.

Trains are great at moving freight. Of COURSE it is profitable to run a monopoly train system -- who ELSE can use those tracks? We could be doing a lot more with trains in this country.

>> And your NIMBY lawsuits -- wow, you must not believe in private property. But really, using light rail, or above ground systems, you don't have to destroy a lot of land -- we can make a rule that any highway that wants to grow beyond 4 lanes has a track on it. Or you could remove some interstate and replace it with rail.

Meanwhile, we have a country that is becoming 2nd rate - BECAUSE people forgetting "enlightened" self-interest.

For $75 Trillion we got CRAP out of Wall Street, and a bunch of Lobbyists telling us that Teacher had to tighten their belts. Go screw yourself with your "fiscal responsibility" -- NeoCon economics has lost us more money than any social program in decades.

You have some BS excuse that it would take so much money and 15 years? Fine, let's do it anyway, maybe some of that money will trickle down to a worthy American for a change. But we got the "Tar Sands Pipeline" crossing the nation to give Texans toxic waste in just a few years all the way from Canada -- EXACTLY what you say is "impossible" -- of course that's when it helps the PEOPLE. Seems when the fat cats want something done -- it gets done. Also, the Supreme court already ruled on "Immanent domain" and it really isn't a problem anymore. Likely they got a few checks from the Oil industry to do it.

Texans will get sulfur sludge and more pollution, and someone will make a LOT of cash -- but it will be piped out of a Tax Free zone because Perry doesn't work for the people. And they will wave the flag and yell "job creators" and of course, not mention that will be more lung doctors than actual short-term pipe building jobs.

Why do I bring this up on an otherwise pleasant geek blog? Because I'm tired of the absolute ignorance of "no tax, no responsibility" capitalism, and this absolutist idea of government. Socialism for the wealthy and Capitalism for everyone else. I don't accept Waterboarding and I don't accept Fascism and EVERY time you people crawl out from under a rock -- I want you to know that it isn't about standing in the way of progress -- it is that we do not exist as a nation for profits and efficiency.
post #34 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ten View Post

The government was wrong to release confidential information. Further, everything the FCC released was editorial, opinion, and based on anecdotal evidence at best. Incompetence at best, conspiratorial government scandal at worst.

That being said, I'll counter with my own (well thought out) opinion:

I, as a consumer (& loyal ATT customer), would be best served with the merger. I would love to be able to go to NYC, and other large cities served by T-Mobile, and make use of the better spectrum I would receive from the merger in these crowded cities. I would love to have the lower prices ATT will offer having more spectrum.

I will not be served well, if ATT is blocked from building out spectrum in these saturated areas. ATT is trying to serve their customers by obtaining spectrum, this is in the public good.

It will not be in the public's best interest if T-Mobile goes out of business. It's going out of business, because it too can't build out it's spectrum (governments fault again) and therefore must attract customers on low price alone (which equals less profits). It will reflect badly on the government when these jobs are lost.

With new spectrum and more bandwidth, this will actually lower prices in the long run. Since bandwidth is finite, it is subject to basic economic laws: More quantity = lower price. Limited quantity = higher price. Look at any commodity, and you'll see this is true (even where the gov gets involved with tariffs or subsidies this proves true).

Monopoly? In this case, the only monopoly is the government and municipalities that make it near impossible to build out new spectrum. Tell me, who can come in a provide the competition needed to supposedly lower prices? No one until policies change. T-Mobile is not providing any meaningful competition to ATT or Verizon. Verizon and Sprint want to block, because the merger will actually provide MORE competition. Why? Because ATT will able to lower prices with the new spectrum, while providing more premium services. This will put pressure on Verizon & ATT to match price, quality, or both.

In this case, the merger is clearly in the public interests good, regardless of the carrier you have.

Atlas Shrugged.


Limited quantity = higher price.
Right, that's exactly what we have. We have engineered scarcity all over the place, slower bandwidth than most developed nations, and the technologies that were invented here -- are in products we import. Got it.


It's so hard to tell a Libertarian from a corporate PR blogger -- it really is. I could think of a dozen ways to resolve this that doesn't require ONE MEGA CELL PHONE company -- and I'm wondering how all these people can find themselves so CLEVER and put upon by lesser people in this country, when they are staggeringly uncreative and horrible problem solvers.

... I know, not a good way to "win" someone over to your point of view,... but I'm so fed up.

Why could we not have an FCC rule to mandate access to ALL cell towers for all providers, and have a "difference exchange" rate on bandwidth. It is ALREADY done on long distance providers; Provider X carriers a caller from Provider Y, and in exchange, Y will also carry X's calls. Then, if there is MORE bandwidth used by Y servicing X, then X makes a payment "on the difference."

How do you think YouTube is able to survive all the gobs of video that get downloaded?

The INTERNET was created by the government and AT&T and other ISPs are HAPPY to charge us for access.

This idea about "hand it all to some rich guys" borders on cult like.

And by the way; Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand is the Mein Kampf manifesto our generation. I know a lot of engineers who are fans of this notion that they are the only smart people, burdened by all the dumb folks who aren't good at math. I just wonder how they are going to feel when there are 50 Chinese engineers of their quality working for less -- how "exceptional" and clever are these selfish people going to feel then?

Monopoly can NEVER be allowed without strict government oversight or regulation -- and there are too many examples to debate. And AT&T is only valuable in that it provides a service (which others would be willing to provide), and it gives some people incomes. Other than that; they aren't owed anything.

T-Mobile is their competition, and we need that.

If AT&T can engineer this whole song and dance to pretend that we NEED a monopoly -- they can easily lobby and solve the "carrier tower" situation. There are plenty of tried and true solutions that are already used in Banking, Internet, and they resolve the "competing users but limited access" problem.

I used to pay $40 a month for natural gas -- and now it's $200 since they've privatized it. I can choose a dozen companies that "rip me off" as if there were a free market over the one pipe. The BS that the government is ONLY bad allows companies to rip us off. Government rules and regulations ALLOW cell phones to operate -- because hey, I could start broadcasting on your Cell signal if there weren't an FCC to send the police after me. Seems some people only see where Government gets in the way, and not where it's a "pretend" government hindrance that corporations use to hide their own self interest.

The 3 or 4 "taxes" on my Natural gas bill are just as bogus.
post #35 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fake_William_Shatner View Post

I can't wait until fascism goes out of style....

... so many excuses for NOT doing the right thing.

Trains are great at moving freight. Of COURSE it is profitable to run a monopoly train system -- who ELSE can use those tracks? We could be doing a lot more with trains in this country.

>> And your NIMBY lawsuits -- wow, you must not believe in private property. But really, using light rail, or above ground systems, you don't have to destroy a lot of land -- we can make a rule that any highway that wants to grow beyond 4 lanes has a track on it. Or you could remove some interstate and replace it with rail.

Meanwhile, we have a country that is becoming 2nd rate - BECAUSE people forgetting "enlightened" self-interest.

For $75 Trillion we got CRAP out of Wall Street, and a bunch of Lobbyists telling us that Teacher had to tighten their belts. Go screw yourself with your "fiscal responsibility" -- NeoCon economics has lost us more money than any social program in decades.

You have some BS excuse that it would take so much money and 15 years? Fine, let's do it anyway, maybe some of that money will trickle down to a worthy American for a change. But we got the "Tar Sands Pipeline" crossing the nation to give Texans toxic waste in just a few years all the way from Canada -- EXACTLY what you say is "impossible" -- of course that's when it helps the PEOPLE. Seems when the fat cats want something done -- it gets done. Also, the Supreme court already ruled on "Immanent domain" and it really isn't a problem anymore. Likely they got a few checks from the Oil industry to do it.

Texans will get sulfur sludge and more pollution, and someone will make a LOT of cash -- but it will be piped out of a Tax Free zone because Perry doesn't work for the people. And they will wave the flag and yell "job creators" and of course, not mention that will be more lung doctors than actual short-term pipe building jobs.

Why do I bring this up on an otherwise pleasant geek blog? Because I'm tired of the absolute ignorance of "no tax, no responsibility" capitalism, and this absolutist idea of government. Socialism for the wealthy and Capitalism for everyone else. I don't accept Waterboarding and I don't accept Fascism and EVERY time you people crawl out from under a rock -- I want you to know that it isn't about standing in the way of progress -- it is that we do not exist as a nation for profits and efficiency.

Sorry, but you didn't answer the question so I'll ask again (sorry for getting so off topic): How much of YOUR money do you think the government should take from you to build a NYC to CA ultra high speed rail line.? An actual figure, please.
post #36 of 37
T-Mobile is profitable. It is making billions a year. It's parent company said it is the US market is the most promising market. It has over thirty million users. There are much smaller carriers who have far fewer users and are also profitable.

According to T-Mobile, T-Mobile's biggest problem is no iPhone. Apple isn't going to bring an iPhone to T-Mobile if T-Mobile isn't going to be around because adding the necessary support costs money that Apple wouldn't' recoup.

If the merger is killed, T-Mobile will be in great shape. It will get four billion dollars worth of cash and spectrum to improve its services. Moreover, it will likely be able to get the iPhone then. After all, DT is one of Apple's biggest partners in Europe. Had it not been for this sale of T-Mobile talk, I suspect we'd already see a T-MObile iPHone.

Moreover, T-Mobile could still partner with AT&T to share spectrum. It could also merge with a smaller competitor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

So if T-Mobile continues to lose share and Deutsche Telekom decides to part them out or scuttle the entire operation, how would that help competition?
post #37 of 37
How much should it take to fund the public roads? By your logic, it seems none. Further, it we lived by your logic, we wouldn't' have an Internet, public roads, and a whole plethora or things, as private companies either didn't have the money to create those things or weren't interested in doing so.

As Oliver Wendell Holmes once was reported to say, Taxes are the Price for Civilized Society. Take away taxes to support public services, and see how long it takes for things that have happened in places like Libya to happen here.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post

Sorry, but you didn't answer the question so I'll ask again (sorry for getting so off topic): How much of YOUR money do you think the government should take from you to build a NYC to CA ultra high speed rail line.? An actual figure, please.
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