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Summary:

In an order released yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission declared certain parts of the New York City cable market competitive, thanks to Verizon offering its FiOS TV in the area. This means the FCC also revokes the ability of the municipal authorities of New York to […]

In an order released yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission declared certain parts of the New York City cable market competitive, thanks to Verizon offering its FiOS TV in the area. This means the FCC also revokes the ability of the municipal authorities of New York to regulate how Time Warner Cable sets its basic cable rates. So far, it looks like parts of Brooklyn and Manhattan are competitive, if one can envision a duopoly (in areas where Cablevision doesn’t provide service) as real competition. Although I may be too cynical, as I bet that TWC will find it hard to implement tiered bandwidth when going head-to-head for broadband and cable subscribers with Verizon, which has shown no inclination to cap or meter customers. Maybe I should hightail it back to Brooklyn.

  1. From a consumer angle, it would be good to see the laws applied to telecom and cable companies to be the same. Right now local and federal laws require taxes and fees that only apply to one and not the other. These laws should be uniform across the board. We get essentially the same services from both now, internet, TV and phone. I am just so sick of these lock-in contracts and the long list of fees and taxes. I want it to be easier to switch from one service to the other. Sure there is competition, but there are a lot of landmines for we the consumer regarding switching. It is being discouraged under cover.

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  2. There is only competition if the lines themselves are opened up and overbuilders can bundle services at lower price points than cable/telco. Cable has for too long benefitted by being considered an entertainment and not information service. But as cable/telco now really are both just pipes to data services, there should be no distinction in how they are regulated. Simply, cable has better lobbyists. The Cable Act should have opened up cable lines to overbuilders for real competition, and the cable co would get compensated for the use of those lines. But cable kept a monopoly on its lines by getting courts to consider this a non-compensated property taking. So, in the executive and courts, cable has out lawyered their potential competition.

    And that’s why the FCC gets to proclaim 2 providers as a competitive market place. What a joke.

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