Life in the Bell jar
Posted by metaphorical on 1 January 2007
Welcome to 2007, the seventh year of the Bush Justice Department and the Bush FCC.
AT&T, with its successive purchases of the old AT&T long distance company and now BellSouth, is apparently beyond the reach of government.
AT&T is by far the biggest telephone company in the U.S. It owns the largest cellular network—all of it, whereas the #2 next competitor, Verizon, only owns 55 percent of its network. AT&T has now reassembled well over half of the old AT&T phone monopoly.
AT&T—in concert with its nominal competitor, Verizon—is getting states to end their municipalities’ right to franchise non-broadcast video services, and they’re getting states and municipalities to restrain themselves from instituting publicly-owned Wi-Fi networks.
In short, AT&T is now big enough to do whatever it wants.