4 items from 2014
You can bet that government officials and opponents of Comcast’s $45.2B planned acquisition of Time Warner Cable will scrutinize its just-released third annual report describing how it has fulfilled the promises it made in 2011 to win FCC approval for the deal to buy NBCUniversal. Opponents already say the cable giant can’t be trusted. ”To the extent that Comcast has a history of breaching its legal obligations to consumers, such history should be taken into account when evaluating Comcast’s proposal for future market expansion,” Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said last week in a letter to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler. But Comcast says the new 90-page report shows that it has “continued to meet and in many cases exceed our obligations.” For example, it says that its Internet Essentials program has provided home broadband service to more than 250,000 low income families, and has exceeded by 64 the requirement to provide »
- DAVID LIEBERMAN, Financial Editor
Sen. Al Franken is wondering: If Comcast failed to keep its promises in the NBCUniversal deal, why should it be trusted with Time Warner Cable? The Minnesota Democrat is questioning whether Comcast has adequately complied with Net Neutrality, local content and unbundled access to Internet services — promises it made as part of the NBC acquisition — and has raised concerns that the Time Warner deal could raise cable prices. “I am concerned that the proposed acquisition could result in higher prices, fewer choices, and even worse service for consumers,” Franken wrote in a letter sent Thursday to Federal Communications Commission Chairman. »
- Ira Teinowitz
Musician and American Idol season two runner-up Clay Aiken is running for Congress in North Carolina, and he just released a very emotional campaign ad. While it may seem like an odd career move, there are many entertainers who have entered into politics after making a name for themselves in show business, the most notable being former President Ronald Reagan and Senator Al Franken. Clay, who is openly gay and also a Southern Baptist, will compete for the Democratic nomination for for the state's 2nd Congressional District. The seat is currently held by Rep. Renee Ellmers, a Republican. While Clay has a loyal fan following with his "Claymates," it isn't clear yet if he can turn that stardom into a political career. Watch Clay's emotional campaign spot above, and let us know: would you vote for Clay? »
- Maria Mercedes Lara
When President Obama delivers his State of the Union address Tuesday evening, NBC News will trot out Brian Williams to anchor its coverage. Fox News Channel will rely on Bret Baier. PBS will feature Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill. But Fusion, the upstart news-and-lifestyle cable outlet, will make use of two bickering crabs and a talking hot dog.
In a maneuver sure to raise eyebrows, Fusion, a joint venture of Univision and ABC News that launched in October, will veer from the traditional when offering coverage of the President’s annual agenda-setting speech. Rather than give the spotlight to Jorge Ramos or Leon Krauze, two veteran news anchors who occupy important slots in its primetime schedule, Fusion will instead count on the talents of a group of puppets, and the comedic minds who fill their mouths with speech.
The cast of Fusion’s 9:30 p.m. satirical program includes Yerd Nerp, »
- Brian Steinberg
4 items from 2014
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