High costs, crappy customer service and speeds well below what’s advertised. How much do you love your Internet Service Provider (ISP)? If you have Comcast or Time Warner Cable, chances are not a lot. These two cable behemoths consistently come in at the top of “worst companies ever” lists, and we’re sure plenty of musicians can count themselves among the frustrated. Now these two companies wanna get married. But will the government allow it?
That’s something that Washington, DC is grappling with as we speak. On one side of the debate you’ve got well-heeled corporate lobbyists working on behalf of ISPs keen to make more money from controlling even more of the broadband marketplace. On the other, you’ve got regular Internet users, consumer groups and creative entrepreneurs who are tired of being promised one thing and paying out the nose for another.
Washington, D.C.— Today, the Attorneys General of seven U.S. states joined a Department of Justice (DOJ) antitrust suit aimed at preventing the merger of AT&T and T-Mobile.
AT&T previously sought government approval to acquire T-Mobile, which, had it been approved, would have seen a single company control nearly half of the wireless market in the United States. Future of Music Coalition (FMC) joins a diverse array of artists, organizations and individuals in supporting the DOJ’s decision to block the merger, and applauds the Attorneys General of New York, Washington, California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Ohio and Pennsylvania in signing on to the DOJ suit. read more
Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), one of the stronger congressional critics of the proposed AT&T-T-Mobile merger, lauded the Justice Department’s move Wednesday to block it, just one of many voices that were weighing in on the announced antitrust suit.
“The Justice Department’s decision to take action to block AT&T’s purchase of T-Mobile is a victory for competition, consumers and choice. We should be protecting American consumers holding their cell phones, not just telecommunications titans holding stock in the companies,” he said in a statement. “The merger would reduce the number of national wireless companies from four down to three, sending the mobile marketplace into a telecommunications time machine back to 1993. That would be an historic mistake….” read more
Today, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced its intention to file suit to prevent the acquisition of T-Mobile by AT&T. The following statement can be attributed to Future of Music Coalition Deputy Director Casey Rae-Hunter.
“Future of Music Coalition applauds the Department of Justice for moving to block the AT&T and T-Mobile merger. We hope the FCC swiftly follows suit to preserve access and innovation in mobile communications. From competition in a crucial marketplace to jobs preservation, preventing this merger is the right thing to do. Creators and consumers alike should welcome today’s news, and we thank those in the music community for helping to illustrate what is at stake for artists and other creative entrepreneurs.” read more
Our friends Ozomatli, known for their eclectic, genre-bending sound and outspoken approach to civic engagement and activism, recently shared their thoughts on the AT&T-T-Mobile merger. Ozomatli are an LA-based band currently serving as U.S. State Department Cultural Ambassadors and artist advisors to FMC. The band will also be in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, June 25to play a can’t miss one-off show with the National Symphony Orchestra Pops at the Kennedy Center.read more
You may have heard about the proposed merger between AT&T and T-Mobile, which would give the combined companies a 43 percent combined share of the mobile market. Were the deal to go through, AT&T and Verizon would control around 70 percent of the market for cell phone subscriptions. That’s a lot of power in not so many hands.
This merger is not just about phone service. Mobile handsets are fast becoming one of the main ways people connect to the internet, and this trend is only going to continue.
So why should musicians and music entrepreneurs care? Lots of reasons, actually. read more
Wow. We just wrapped up a panel here at SXSW called Creative Capitol: Music, Culture and Policy Under Obama, and it was amazing. Here's what the roster looked like:
Michael Bracy Policy Director, Future of Music Coalition Rachel Goslins President's Committee on the Arts & Humanities Austin Schlick General Counsel, Federal Communications Commission Tim Tuten Hideout/Department of Education Christine Varney Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust, Department of Justice read more