AT&T Loves Competition (Or At Least Their Version Of It)

AT&T has paid a UC-Berkeley professor to write a paper which says that cable-TV prices would drop if more competition were introduced to the California market — competition from, say, a telco like AT&T. It’s kind of amusing to watch AT&T act like a bastion of competition and a great friend of the consumer in the TV space, while on the telephone and broadband side, they do their best to resist competition and abuse their monopoly (or duopoly) power. If AT&T is so concerned about competition and consumer prices, why not lease out capacity wholesale on their networks and let third-party providers offer consumers services? They’re happy to do that in the more competitive wireless market. AT&T and Verizon are lobbying to get state cable franchising laws changed to make it easier for them to get into the market. Perhaps if their plans supported competition in a meaningful way, rather than just extending the duopoly to cable TV, they’d have an easier time — not that they really have a problem getting what they want from government.

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