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Media & Democracy 02.11.2020

Multichannel News: T-Mobile-Sprint Decision Draws Crowd

“We are deeply disappointed in the Court’s decision to approve the T-Mobile-Sprint merger, which will have significant consequences for consumers and competition," said Michael Copps, special advisor to Common Cause and former Democratic FCC chairman. "All of the evidence in this proceeding shows that this merger is inherently illegal under antitrust law. Even evidence presented at the trial revealed the companies’ executives acknowledged prices for wireless service would rise if the merger was approved. The Court’s decision will reduce the wireless market from four to three national carriers, undoubtedly raising prices on wireless customers."

Media & Democracy 01.12.2020

Seattle Times (Op-Ed): 2020: The Year America Gets Its Act Together

Voting is, of course, the first step in democracy reform. But getting meaningful positive change requires so much more. Citizen involvement, working together, demanding to be informed, organizing on the issues, getting commitments from candidates, and then holding them accountable, is more demanding. Yet it is the price of democracy.Will we pay that price? We are paying dearly now for things that disserve our country, so maybe nourishing the roots of self-government isn’t such a heavy price to pay after all. This is the year of decision. We have the opportunity now in 2020 to put America on course to what it can and should be. Let’s seize the opportunity — while we still have it.

Media & Democracy 10.17.2019

Broadcasting & Cable: With Starks' 'No,' FCC Wraps Up T-Mobile-Sprint Vote

“The majority-FCC’s vote to approve the disastrous T-Mobile-Sprint merger is a vote to raise prices, reduce innovation, and price out millions of low-income and marginalized communities from wireless service, "said former FCC chairman and current Common Cause special adviser Michael Copps. "All of the evidence shows that this deal is inherently illegal under antitrust law and does not meet the public interest criteria the FCC is required to follow. Rather than actually conduct a thorough public interest review of the merger, the majority at the FCC signaled it would approve the deal months ago pointing to promises and commitments made by T-Mobile and Sprint. But these promises and behavioral conditions are unenforceable and riddled with loopholes that do nothing to address the significant harms consumers would face from the merger."

Media & Democracy 09.29.2019

Seattle Times (Op-Ed): Journalists must make the shrinking free press a campaign issue

In the coming months and during the presidential debates, the public and the candidates themselves should demand that media hold itself accountable in campaign coverage. Reporters should begin asking candidates why we don’t have net neutrality and an open internet despite polls showing 85% of the public — Republicans, Democrats and Independents — support it. Reporters should be asking the candidates if media consolidation troubles them and what they might do about it. Reporters should be asking why so many communities live in news deserts today and what they would do to fix this.

Media & Democracy 05.22.2019

Gizmodo: DOJ Attorneys Reportedly Ready to Block T-Mobile/Sprint Merger

“Rather than actually examine the competitive impact, Chairman Pai’s recommended approval points to T-Mobile’s commitments and behavioral conditions,” said Yosef Getachew, media and democracy program director for Common Cause. “Not only are these commitments and conditions unenforceable and riddled with loopholes, they do nothing to address the blatant competitive harms the merger poses to consumers.”

Media & Democracy 12.5.2018

NBC News: Media Mega-Mergers Under Threat with Democrats Controlling the House

“I think the background definitely changes with a flip of the House. There is going to be more oversight, probably some attempts to draw up legislation,” said former FCC commissioner Michael Copps, now an adviser to watchdog group Common Cause.

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