Sprint, T-Mobile Try To Sell The Public On A Job-Killing, Competition Eroding Megamerger

from the more-of-this-shit dept

Sprint and T-Mobile are once again talking megamerger. The two companies tried to merge in 2014, but had their romantic entanglements blocked by regulators who (quite correctly) worried that the elimination of one of just four major players in the space would eliminate jobs, reduce competition and drive up costs for consumers. Emboldened by the Trump FCC's rubber stamping of industry desires, the two companies again spent much of last year talking about a potential tie up, though those efforts were ultimately scuttled after the two sides couldn't agree on who'd get to run the combined entity.

But the two companies appear to have settled their disagreements, and over the weekend announced they'd be attempting to merge once again as part of a $26 billion deal. Executives for both companies spent most of the weekend trying to convince the public that dramatically reducing competitors in the sector would magically somehow create more competition:

Of course that's not how competition works. While T-Mobile has had a net positive impact on the wireless sector on things like hidden fees and absurd international roaming costs, the four major carriers had already been backing away from promotions so far this year as they try to avoid something the telecom sector loathes: genuine price competition. As our friends in Canada can attest, reducing the overall number of major competitors from four to three only reduces the incentive for real price competition even further. It's simply not debatable.

And while the two companies are trying to claim that Sprint couldn't have survived on its own, that's not really true. The company's debt load is notable, but with Japanese owner Softbank the company had slowly but surely been getting a handle on its finances. And if a deal was inevitable for survival, there's plenty of potential merger partners (from Dish Networks to a major cable company like Charter Spectrum) that could have been pursued without eliminating a major competitor.

The two companies are also amusingly trying to claim that the deal will somehow create jobs:

And while that's adorable salesmanship, it's indisputably false. History has proven time, and time, and time again that such consolidation in telecom erodes competition, jobs, and quality service. Mindless M&A mania is a primary reason why you all loathe Comcast, since growth for growth's sake consistently means service quality takes a back seat.

Wall Street analysts had previously predicted that a tie up between the two companies could result in the elimination of anywhere from 10,000 to 30,000 jobs (the latter being more than Sprint even currently employs) as redundant retail locations, middle managers, and engineers are inevitably dismissed. And while both companies are spouting the usual lines about how "nothing will really change," anybody that has lived through a deal like this one (or, say, just paid attention to history) should realize the folly of such claims.

Whether the deal will be approved by the Trump administration is uncertain. While the Ajit Pai run FCC has made it abundantly clear it's willing to rubber stamp every fleeting sector desire regardless of its impact (net neutrality, privacy), the Trump DOJ has become a bit of a wildcard in the wake of its lawsuit to thwart the AT&T Time Warner merger. Some analysts see the deal as having only a 40% chance of approval, though Sprint and T-Mobile are trying their best to pander to the Trump admin by claiming that the miracles of next-gen wireless (5G) can only arrive if they're allowed to merge.

But there's a reason both companies announced the deal on a Sunday when everybody was napping or tending to the lawn. There's also a reason they're trying to rush this deal through now before adult regulatory supervision inevitably returns at the FCC. And that's again because this deal, like so many telecom sector megadeals before it, will only benefit investors and shareholders, not the public or the internet at large. Since companies can't admit that these deals are largely harmful to anybody but themselves, we get obnoxious sales pitches that aggressively ignore common sense -- and history.


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  • icon
    TheResidentSkeptic (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 6:57am

    He is being truthful...

    ...it will create thousands of new jobs.

    At $30/hr by eliminating tens of thousands of jobs at $40/hr. Think of the wonderful executive bonuses those savings will cover ... and all the campaign contributions...

    And what else matters? Certainly not those annoying consumers...

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:29am

      Re: He is being truthful...

      but mergers do indeed create jobs, for the kind of corporate lawyers and investment bankers that provide million-dollar incomes. And those are just the grunts, by comparison there are the insiders who grease the skids that enable these merger deals to go through, people who can command a king's ransom (and are arguably worth every penny of it)

      which raises the question about job creation -- for statistical purposes, should the creation of a single job that pays ten thousand times the average workingman's wages count as ten thousand jobs?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:49am

        Re: Re: He is being truthful...

        "arguably worth every penny of it"

        Arguably, some of them belong in jail.


        The "jobs number" has, and will continue to be a bullshit number whose sole purpose is to bullshit the general public into the false belief that the economy is ok when in fact it is still suffering from the raping it received last time the rich assholes destroyed the world economy.


        Simply reporting the number of new jobs does little to influence my opinion of the economic health. Now if they were to publish some form of these numbers that accurately reflects the net gain/loss in addition to accounting for the difference in pay then it might be of some use - otherwise it is a meaningless bullshit number with no relevant units of measure.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:10am

          Re: Re: Re: He is being truthful...

          It seems jobs statistics are often meaningless. Such as when, over the last several decades, a person who loses a high paying factory job and ends up working two low paying (no benefit) retail/service jobs to avoid personal bankruptcy. Technically that's job growth, hence economic improvement to be bragged about by politicians.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:46am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: He is being truthful...

            You bring up a good point, the loss/gain of health care is very important and also needs to be included in the number in order for it to mean anything other than bullshit to brag about at cocktail parties.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 3:57pm

          Re: Re: Re: He is being truthful...

          The unemployment rate has been unchanged at 4,1 % while more than a million people entered the workforce according to industry numbers and inflation/wage growth is going through the roof according to some sources while the federal reserves numbers are showing an anemic number barely able to claw back to their 2% target etc. etc. Numbers are easy to manipulate if you just don't care.

          A military-phrase that seems to hold for most things in life: "Shit rolls down hill", meaning the natural order of things is that the lower on the totem pole will always suffer for any higher ups making mistakes...

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:04am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: He is being truthful...

            "the natural order of things is that the lower on the totem pole will always suffer for any higher ups making mistakes..."

            and the higher ups fail to realize their greedy tendencies result in a less efficient business model.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    MinchinWeb (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 7:14am

    Canada as an Example

    Canada is a great example of the difference between having 3 and 4 cell carriers can do. In the most populated parts of the country (BC, Alberta, Ontario), there are only 3 carriers. For historical reasons, there are 4 carriers in Saskatchewan (population: 1.1 million). On the same carrier, the same plan will cost $90+/mo in BC, Alberta or Ontario, or $48 in Saskatchewan.

    Manitoba (population: 1.2 million) used to have a 4th carrier, but it was sold to Bell; prices hiked from the $48 to $90/mo almost overnight.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      MinchinWeb (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 7:16am

      Re: Canada as an Example

      The difference in pricing is great enough that a grey (black?) market has developed to get Saskatchewan phone plan prices outside of the province.

      http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/wireless-black-market-offers-cheap-plans-outside-manitoba -saskatchewan-1.3166491

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 9:07am

        Oh, look: MinchinWeb or Narrator with 50 month gap to 2018!

        Yes, Zombie Master, I'd noticed this "account" TOO. Three comments this year get up to all of 6 comments total, less than 1 per year!

        How many are we supposed to believe that a person is interested enough to keep password through SIX YEARS, half dormant, for an average of ONE comment per year?

        That's very restrained promoting of a web site too! -- Last updated August 30, 2017, not exactly hot news.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:59am

      Re: Canada as an Example

      The "charge what the market will bear" crowd frequently ignores the fact that such behavior is detrimental to their business. Little to no planning for the future is commonplace and no wonder why so many businesses are caught off guard. Some of the bigger businesses then lobby their politicians for a bailout ... certainly not because they deserve it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 4:22pm

        Re: Re: Canada as an Example

        Oh the good ol' time. I remember gas stations having a standard price and then suddenly one lowered prices and another station underbidding and the rest following. It lowered the price by 10+%, which lasted for a period untill the prices normalized. In the beginning the price war lasted untill a few station went tits up. At a later point it started thursday with standard list prices when the stations got new supply and was lowered throughout the week untill i was reset on thursday...

        When a market is oversupplied, that is what happens. As soon as demand exceeds supply the situation is entirely different. And something most people forget: Time with oversupply ends since it sucks for people seeking profit. Most large companies know that and as soon as a market gets overcrouded they decide to outspend to push out competition or, more effectively, buy them out. People claiming economic efficiency in small scale upstarts will always win against large entrenched competitors obviously don't understand the golden rules, whether applied towards law, competition or most other avenues of life...

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    OldMugwump (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 7:17am

    Job-killing = Progress

    If the merger really eliminates jobs while still providing the same services that Sprint + T-Mobile did before, that's pretty much the definition of progress.

    Delivering more with less. Productivity increase.

    If you can deliver the same service with less people, that frees up some people to produce other goods or services.

    That's how economies grow.

    (Of course it's tough if it's *your* job that's redundant, but that's your problem, not the economy's problem.)

    FWIW, I'm skeptical. Mergers usually end up losing money and decreasing productivity. (Except top managers win by expanding their empires.)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:36am

      Re: Job-killing = Progress

      In almost any capital-intensive industry there's going to be a certain economy of scale improvement, sometimes a huge one, as a merger results in the elimination of excess redundancy, with a corresponding improvement in efficiency.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:41am

      Re: Job-killing = Progress

      yup, this 'job loss' concern seems just a very phony effort to further criticize the merger. Wireless consumers should cheer the prospect of efficiency gains via reduced labor requirements. This is Luddite stuff, if they were sincere in their criticism. (... wasn't it horrible when AT&T fired all their switchboard operators and automated telephone connections two generations ago ??)


      how many wireless carriers should their be ?
      who should decide that ?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:47am

        Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

        Bringing up the job killing of mergers is the right thing to do, when the companies proposing the merger are claiming that it will create jobs. It is not Luddite stuff, but rather calling out the lies being peddled to get the merger accepted by the politicians.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        JoeCool (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 12:39pm

        Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

        You're right! We do that in EVERY sector of the economy. Let's start with all those Burger Kings and McDonald's. Having BOTH in every town is a wasteful duplication of effort. Merge them and get rid of one or the other. No more excess redundancy in the burger making industry! ;)

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:07am

          Re: Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

          In the future, the fast food wars was won by tacobell and now everything is tacobell.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 4:55pm

        Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

        You are confusing benefits to workers and speculative benefits to society. My question would be, why waste ressouces on competition if a single entity is more efficient?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Wendy Cockcroft, 2 May 2018 @ 5:49am

          Re: Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

          If a single entity was more efficient we wouldn't ever complain about monopolies, would we?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            OldMugwump (profile), 2 May 2018 @ 11:42am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

            Monopolies are almost never sustainable without government intervention, Wendy.

            There's always a tradeoff between the efficiency of consolidation and the laziness and lack of care about customers caused by too little competition. These reach an equilibrium somewhere between one monopolistic seller and every firm having one person in it.

            But "job-killing" in and of itself, all other things being equal (which they never are), is good. Not bad.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:12am

          Re: Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

          Are you claiming that "workers" is not a subset of "society"?

          Benefits to workers is going to benefit society, no? Maybe you are looking at the point of diminishing returns?

          Waste resources on competition .. what are you a damned commie or something?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            OldMugwump (profile), 2 May 2018 @ 11:47am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

            AC, of course workers are a subset of society.

            When we say something benefits society, that doesn't mean it benefits everyone, or everyone equally. Some may be harmed, while others gain.

            It's just saying that the gain is bigger than the harm.

            And fairness requires that a few shouldn't suffer for the benefit of the many. The losers have to be compensated (out of the winnings). One way is to do it directly, for every harm. Another is to to let people win some and lose some, as long as on average they win more than they lose.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 4 May 2018 @ 2:51am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Job-killing = Progress

            It is an interesting discussion about workers versus society. Certain economic ideas adopted rather broadly in modern societies suggest that competing societies dictates that too many benefits for workers is very bad for a society as it is a competitive disadvantage for the rest of society.

            As for wasting resources on competition, it is indeed a huge waste to have two people selling, one for each company. The notion, though, should be that maybe the resources "wasted" may come back in other advantages...

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Vel the Enigmatic, 1 May 2018 @ 7:56am

      Re: Job-killing = Progress

      "(Of course it's tough if it's *your* job that's redundant, but that's your problem, not the economy's problem.)"

      That's blaming the victim.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:03am

      Re: Job-killing = Progress

      Interesting how you overlooked the very real other side of that coin. The loss of competition in an already non-competitive market will not be good for the consumer, the economy or the merging entities. It is a money grab, plain and simple. The consumer will lose as they always do. This attempt to blow smoke up yer ass is pathetic.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:59am

    Regulation

    is the noose from which you all now hang.

    I hope you enjoy that noose, It's not like you have not been constantly warned that the power you give your friends is the power you give your enemies!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:04am

      Re: Regulation

      I gave nothing to anyone and you are wrong to accuse me of doing anything - dumbass.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 8:17am

      Noose vs Axe

      If the 'some regulations are good and needed' crowd get the noose, I hope you enjoy the executioner's axe of 'the market will keep the companies honest, no need for regulations' the companies are swinging around.

      Don't worry, I'm sure they have your best interest at heart, and are only interested in giving you a haircut.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:38am

        Re: Noose vs Axe

        So much cognitive dissonance with your response.

        "I hope you enjoy the executioner's axe of 'the market will keep the companies honest"

        Your regulations are not keeping anything honest either? How is it that everyone eles's ideas are require to keep the market honest but your ideas do not have that same requirement?

        "no need for regulations' the companies are swinging around."

        I am okay with anti-monopoly and anti-trust regulations... the ones that promote a free-market than "enable" for the market to "keep itself honest" as you so dishonestly state it.

        "Don't worry, I'm sure they have your best interest at heart, and are only interested in giving you a haircut."

        Markets do not keep themselves honest, the idea is for the consumers to keep in honest by refusing to do business with bad elements. Unfortunately that requires people like you to get a little self discipline and control your shopping impulses. It also requires you to perform a little due diligence about how you do business with as well, but we all know that blame shifting is your end game at the end of the day.

        Consumers are not responsible for giving Holly Wood all that money, Government is!
        Voters are not responsible for who gets elected, corrupt Politics are!
        The poor are not responsible for being poor, the rich are!
        Criminals are not responsible for being criminals, the justice system is!

        Everyone one of those problems can be pointed at a single cause... the people that shirk their responsibility to utilize their liberty in such a way that is benefits society instead of damaging it or asking for a corrupt politician save them from themselves.


        This is me!
        "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than those attending too small a degree of it."

        ~Thomas Jefferson

        You are the opposite. You need to be hand fed and controlled by the government because you are a fear driven creature that rightfully sees that humans are default evil, but wrongly chooses how to fight it!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:51am

          Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

          You project arrogance but lack depth, must be the most transparent poster yet.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 8:59am

            Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

            You only perceive arrogance because you know I am right and feel as though I am trying to lord it over you.

            I am not, I just flat out telling you what is wrong and that your solutions are not going to fix it and will only make them worse.

            Sure, lets have a few regulations, but you guys are asking for so many that you are on your knees praying and begging to be screwed by regulators that are bought and paid for industry shills.

            Have you not stopped to look at all the revolving doors between regulators and the industries they regulate? You almost cannot get a regulators job without having first worked FOR the big bad businesses.

            The only thing that is arrogant is your absolute refusal to notice the truth wagging it's dripping ass in your face.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 1:13pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              “Yu only perceive arrogance because you know I am right and feel as though I am trying to lord it over you.”

              You’re right about one thing. You’re not arrogant. You’re a flat out narssist with the self awareness of three day old roadkill.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:18am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              "flat out telling you what is wrong"
              - I do not need you telling me what is right and what is wrong.


              "your solutions are not going to fix it and will only make them worse."
              - What solution(s) would that be, as I do not recall posting about any solutions.


              "you guys are asking for so many"
              - I am? .. really? LOL

              Open your eyes, it appears you are sleep walking

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          James Burkhardt (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 9:39am

          Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

          "Markets do not keep themselves honest, the idea is for the consumers to keep in honest by refusing to do business with bad elements."

          Strangely, I and Techdirt agree with you that competition is the better solution. Hence this article noting problems with a merger that would eliminate wireless competition. Could you perhaps detail some regulations in the wireless space that would move a competitor into the space and clarify what they could do long term, that would inspire customers to move to them? And of course point to the regulations, aside from net neutrality which was no impediment to investment, that Techdirt has championed that are preventing investment in the wireless market.

          You have claimed that regulations are the problem, so tell me the solution.

          Small note: You know, we used to have a bunch of competition in the internet space, both DSL and Dial Up and then title II regulations and the associated protection of the separation between the service and infrastructure layers went away, and now the broadband market is lacking competition, only providing one cable, and one DSL at best in most areas. I don't have a choice, i need cable for work, DSL doesn't have enough bandwidth. Moreover, this situation was the case before I ever could choose broadband. But yeah, all we need to do is stop using the internet, and internet competition will just appear!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 10:25am

            Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

            "Strangely, I and Techdirt agree with you that competition is the better solution."

            I don't think I can agree with that statement. TD is firmly a proponent of regulations that prevent that competitive element. I would be happy to be proven wrong, but I don't think I will. People and TD's heart can be in the right place, but their actions are more often than not, counter productive to their causes. In short, I believe you guys are genuinely wanting to help, but just lack the foresight necessary to help in the "best" way.

            "Hence this article noting problems with a merger that would eliminate wireless competition."

            Yes, I agree with the claims that this article is making about the merger, I am just and advancing the idea that it was regulations "of the kind that TD espouses" helped create this problem.


            "Could you perhaps detail some regulations in the wireless space that would move a competitor into the space and clarify what they could do long term, that would inspire customers to move to them?"

            This is really three different things.
            #1. Regulations that would prevent a merger like this.
            Regulations that ease filing and licensing.
            Regulations that outlaw the sale of wireless spectrums.
            Regulations that prevent ownership of spectrums like the poles problem, they only create "unnatural monopolies" for the highest bidder.
            Regulations that prevent anti-trust... if you create and post content, you cannot also own/operate any network that distributes them at any level, private or umbrella.

            #2. No regulations on how the business operates itself directly.
            Have regulations for "no false advertising". And remove the false advertising fines and just make the offenses jail-able to those that "approve" them. Same for bill stuffing.
            Regulations that force all interactions between businesses and regulators to be open recorded sessions 100%. 10 years minimum Jail time for any regulator or business person found guilty or having any form of secret communications and all persons between said communications that knowingly assisted.

            #3. No regulations on how customers can pick and choose. And why is this even a question? People get to do what they want, even start a competing business if they don't like how the incumbents are doing.

            "You have claimed that regulations are the problem, so tell me the solution."

            The "regulation mentality" is the problem. The idea that you can be protected by a politician... that is the problem.

            It must be free-market, because that is the ONLY system I know of htat will give the consumer a choice... regulation just creates the "illusion" of choice by government deciding who is playing fairly enough to avoid being shutdown which creates this problem right now. Each administration decides what is fair or not and it drives up costs and creates market uncertainty. creating market uncertainty should never be governments power, that should be a consumer driven problem.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              James Burkhardt (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 12:07pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              I appreciate your response. I want to start by addressing #2. "No regulations on how the business operates itself directly." Ok. How will this work out?

              "Have regulations for "no false advertising". Immediately contradicted, it seems. That is a regulation on how the business operates. In fact, any law or regulation would be, by their nature. they are restrictions on how people act. In fact we have those laws, and due to the vaguries of human speech, a regulatory body to lay down predictable guidelines, and bring suit when those guidelines are breached. Removing the regulator doesn't fix the problem, Politicians are still the ones making the laws even if you throw it back to congress. Im not following what you are looking for here.

              "And remove the false advertising fines and just make the offenses jail-able to those that "approve" them. Same for bill stuffing."

              Huh. So you want businesses to work like politicians. Throwing the blame for any infraction on an underling, while allowing the business to keep all profits of their illegal actions, maintaining on of the biggest complaint about regulators, namely the idea that as long as a business can make more money than the regulator fines them, they might as well? The financial penalty was to strip a business of those profits, but the fines often are not in proportion. Or are we only arresting VPs? How do we decide where the buck stops? You have stated that we can't rely on Politicians, it is the reason the regulatory mindset is an issue. But this enforcement mechanism seems perfectly designed for the back alley deals Politicians are known for and this seems to rely on politicians building an entirely new legal framework to hold corporations accountable. I recognize that you seem to think we can force some 100% open communications system. I can see plenty of ways where the corruption doesn't involve any communication between the Regulated and the regulator. And even if not, I can see plenty of ways to keep the big wigs in power and dump underlings, and since there are no monetary penalties, not much incentive to stop. Oh, Free market. Right. Still not sure how any of this incentivises competition over AT&T dumping cash on you to go away. Or encourages me to move from my reliable connection that I know works across the country to a small regional provider that opened last week. Even if they can get the spectrum, and even if we don't encounter the spectrum interference concerns that prompted the licensing of spectrum, it's still a long shot that such an upfront costed venture would see significant investment in the investment-averse market. That is why we discuss things like communications in terms of 'natural monopolies', they defy free market expectations. I have lived through several attempts to bring competition to the energy market in CA, and all they do is cripple CA and raise costs overall before they fail. I have solutions to bring competition to the wireless market, allowing a free market on the service layer, but it involves regulating the infrastructure and those who own the infrastructure. And thats a big no no in your book.

              I apologize for the rant. But you ask us to not rely on politicians, by relying on politicians. I would like some answers to partisan patty cake regulation, but dismantling quicker moving regulators in favor of the slower moving congress and some sort of Executive branch game of "where does the buck stop" is not it.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 1:50pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                ""Have regulations for "no false advertising". Immediately contradicted, it seems. That is a regulation on how the business operates. In fact, any law or regulation would be, by their nature. they are restrictions on how people act."

                I see, you are wanting to get technical. Lets drop the short hand.

                I am not anti-regulation, I am anti-anti-free-market regulation. There really is a critical difference that I think many people do not "care" to understand.

                "Removing the regulator doesn't fix the problem, Politicians are still the ones making the laws even if you throw it back to congress."

                I am not saying remove the regulator, I would say that they need to be removed from the decision making game and be enforcement only. No, the politicians are not making that many laws any more, the regulators are. In fact it is unconstitutional that regulators make laws...

                "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives."

                and the Last part of Section 8.
                "To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof."

                Congress never had the power to give any agency law making power.

                "Huh. So you want businesses to work like politicians. Throwing the blame for any infraction on an underling,"

                Yikes!!! Why would you think that? Underlings cannot approve of these things in a business. The boss goes to jail because they are part of the approval chain. If the owner of a company wants to let a subordinate make a decision that could put him in jail that is his decision. All advertisements should just automatically require the signature of the business owner/CEO. No company or business should be so big that the CEO cannot be responsible for what it is doing. Period!

                "I apologize for the rant."

                No need, you did mistake a lot of my intentions, but there is NO WAY to ever prevent corruption. All you can do is put things in place to help deal with it has it presents. This is why Free-Market has to be the way forward, it is the ONLY method that allows the consumers the most freedom to deal with corrupt businesses. Right now regulatory capture and government involvement has destroyed the free market and secured monopolies for these businesses to the detriment of the people. Almost everything is regulated and part of an umbrella company or a franchise. You don't have a choice, you just get to decide what they have allowed you to decide.

                "But you ask us to not rely on politicians, by relying on politicians."

                No, I am saying do not rely on a politician to "save you". There is a big difference. People look to government like they look to religion.

                https://www.richarddawkins.net/2018/04/government-vs-god-people-are-less-religious-when-gov ernment-is-bigger-research-says/

                People are insane to rely on a politician to do anything other than to administrate government affairs... to let them decide how a business should run via regulation is insane. We only need regulations enough to make dishonest business practices easy to tackle by the people, that is it, any more and we will invite regulatory capture and result in the oppression of the people instead!

                If you really think we can have utopia at the hands of a human then let me be the first to invite you to what is known as "complete and utter failure".

                The person you ask to protect you becomes your master!

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:22am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                  Still trying to figure out your angle, perhaps it is simply to stir up dissent like those agent provocateurs.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              James Burkhardt (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 12:11pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              I think, in the end, my issue is that your solution seems to be based on completely restructuring corporate law and upending years of settled, predictable precedent, and throwing everything to the wolves on the basis that it would improve market certainty.

              And seems to assume that established major players don't just buy their competition in infancy all the time.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 2:13pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                See, that is a problem, you are complain about a free market "potentially" producing what is already being produced right now in the midst of a regulatory environment.

                Free-market is not a "cure for corruption", it just happens to be the best possible remedy. Proper Anti-Trust and Anti-Monopoly laws should put a stop to businesses buying up competition. And yes, those can fail too because regulators can fail, but that is not a good excuse to say "because regulators can fail, lets give them even more power and even bigger reasons to fail and become corrupt"

                Government is NOT a proper control to the economy, the people are. Government is only to provide mechanisms and avenues of legal recourse for when the players start breaching contracts and using deception to steal from others.

                Now that government and business are completely in bed with each other, why would you expect to get a seat at the table? They are just two wolves deciding on how you, the lamb, will be cooked and divided for supper!

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 2:24pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                  Proper Anti-Trust and Anti-Monopoly laws should put a stop to businesses buying up competition

                  How do you propose to deal with things that require a large corporation, or forced co-operation between corporations, like communications systems. For example, a mobile phone is only useful if it works wherever you go, and does not stop working because two mile from home there is a different supplier. Also how do you supply fuel and power, where large and long lived corporations are critical to having a reliable supply at a reasonable cost.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:24am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                  "Free-market is not a "cure for corruption", it just happens to be the best possible remedy."

                  I think this claim needs a bit of supporting evidence, otherwise it is simply an unsupported claim being made by someone on the internet who is most likely not an expert in the field.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Mike Masnick (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 6:02pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              TD is firmly a proponent of regulations that prevent that competitive element. I would be happy to be proven wrong, but I don't think I will.

              We have responded to you on this claim multiple times, explained in great detail why you're wrong and why we support competition and less regulation in nearly all circumstances.

              Your response is... to ignore that and pretend that your made up "what TD wants" is reality.

              What do we say about someone who denies reality?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Wendy Cockcroft, 2 May 2018 @ 5:57am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              I don't think I can agree with that statement. TD is firmly a proponent of regulations that prevent that competitive element.

              Which regulations would those be? Per the article:

              **But the two companies appear to have settled their disagreements, and over the weekend announced they'd be attempting to merge once again as part of a $26 billion deal. Executives for both companies spent most of the weekend trying to convince the public that dramatically reducing competitors in the sector would magically somehow create more competition:

              ...Of course that's not how competition works. While T-Mobile has had a net positive impact on the wireless sector on things like hidden fees and absurd international roaming costs, the four major carriers had already been backing away from promotions so far this year as they try to avoid something the telecom sector loathes: genuine price competition. As our friends in Canada can attest, reducing the overall number of major competitors from four to three only reduces the incentive for real price competition even further. It's simply not debatable.**

              Mr. Bode is complaining that allowing the merger would reduce competition, i.e. he's advocating anti-trust measures by declaring that the merger should not go ahead. This directly contradicts your assertions.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 9:41am

          Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

          I am okay with anti-monopoly and anti-trust regulations...

          Regulations require agencies to enforce them, and if those agencies are captured by vested interests even the few regulations that you propose will not work. I also assume you want regulations to ensure that equipment is safe, and infrastructure builder cannot rum rampant over individual rights, or build out in a shoddy and dangerous fashion etc.

          How do you propose dealing with the real regulation problem in the US, that of regulatory capture because the heads of government agencies are short term political appointees? If that problem, along with political donations from companies, along with lobbying are not dealt with, your proposals are a dangerous daydream which only strengthen large corporations.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 10:30am

            Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

            "Regulations require agencies to enforce them, and if those agencies are captured by vested interests even the few regulations that you propose will not work."

            You are 100% correct, but do you know of a way to prevent that capture? I can only think of free-market mechanisms... it is much hard to buy off the public than it is a regulator.

            The free-market is to provide that extra fail-safe when regulations fail. The other fail safe is for people to start hold their political critters responsible... yes a lost cause due to the "Political Religion of Democrats and Republicans" right now.

            "your proposals are a dangerous daydream which only strengthen large corporations."

            This is where you become willfully ignorant. We have had these regulations for nearly a century now and the businesses are only getting bigger. Not only have you failed, you have failed BIG TIME!

            You are the one living in a dangerous daydream!

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 12:35pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              but do you know of a way to prevent that capture?

              Look at how much of Europe structure their agencies. They are headed by a career civil servant, and the government interface is via elected politicians being appointed as minister or secretary depending on the size of the agency. The head is not worrying about a in in 4 or 5 years time, and the Minister or secretary has to worry about being re-elected.

              As I said originally, the US has a structural problem with its regulatory agencies, due to political patronage of unelected head on short term contracts. That needs fixing, else any agency will be liable to regulatory capture, or having its intended function being damaged by a political appointee. Hint look at what Trump is doing to agencies that dealt with environmental issues and public land, to make them more friendly to corporate interests.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 9:44am

          Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

          So much cognitive dissonance with your response.

          Just for entertainment purposes, define 'cognitive dissonance'.

          Your regulations are not keeping anything honest either? How is it that everyone eles's ideas are require to keep the market honest but your ideas do not have that same requirement?

          That they're not perfect does not mean they should be tossed entirely, and if you're going to propose an alternative(which is what? Ah yes, 'regulations') the minimum standard is that they meet the standard you set. If the current system isn't working because it doesn't keep things honest, then yours had best meet that standard or you're just wasting time.

          I am okay with anti-monopoly and anti-trust regulations... the ones that promote a free-market than "enable" for the market to "keep itself honest" as you so dishonestly state it.

          And cue the backpeddling that happens every time this situation comes up. You may enjoy your 'Regulations are the best thing ever and can do no wrong' strawman you like erecting so much and applying to everyone but yourself(followed of course by blaming everyone for wanting regulations), but it does tend to lead to entertaining moments when you have to allow nuance to enter the discussion and you suddenly find yourself defending regulations as sometimes necessary, otherwise known as 'the position those around you are already at'.

          It also requires you to perform a little due diligence about how you do business with as well, but we all know that blame shifting is your end game at the end of the day.

          Watching you, who does nothing but sling around blame, accuse someone else is just brilliant. Thanks for the laugh.

          But by all means, tell me how much time you spend in 'due diligence' before buying from someone. Tell me how many companies and services you have added to your blacklist and refuse to do business with, even when it completely cuts you off from something.

          It clearly isn't internet service, yet if you're in the US odds are very good you're either lucky enough(which has squat to do with you) to be in a location where you can avoid paying one of the major ISP's, or you're not, and you're hypocritically paying them anyway.

          So which is it, lucky or hypocrite, or will you perhaps claim that you were rich enough that you could afford to pack up and move simply to live in an area with actual competition?

          You are the opposite. You need to be hand fed and controlled by the government because you are a fear driven creature that rightfully sees that humans are default evil, but wrongly chooses how to fight it!

          As entertaining as your wild-ass guesses are, I'm happy to say that they are just that. Unlike you apparently I don't see humans as 'default evil'(that's got to be a fun life to live with that viewpoint), and while you may enjoy being controlled and hand fed by private corporations(which is just as accurate as your assertion about me), I can safely say that that is not my position with regards to government.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 9:47am

            Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

            I like how his definition of "choose to fight it" is yell at strangers on the Internet and get all uppity when he doesn't get the groveling and toe-kissing he wants...

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 10:38am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              Right now, a change in you idiots must occur to fix the problem.

              I am more concerned that you idiots are playing right into the hands of the regulators and big businesses. That is the reason I am here.

              You are the problem, your ignorance, your fear... it makes you easy to control. Businesses know this, the regulators know this, but you don't know this.

              The businesses have successfully made you believe that free-market is your enemy. This makes you support government controlled regulations. This makes it easier for businesses to buy regulations that help them create and keep their monopolies.

              YOU handed them the dagger that has been jammed into your back!

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 11:42am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                You're the idiot - obviously, otherwise you would not be calling others here idiots. Understand?

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:41pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

                I didn't hand shit. I keep telling you I'm from the other side of the planet but apparently that hasn't sunk in and you keep screaming to me that American politics is my fault.

                Get bent.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 10:33am

            Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

            "That they're not perfect does not mean they should be tossed entirely,"

            Not what I am saying, can you have one conversation without resorting to lying about my position?

            This is why you are full of cognitive dissonance.

            I tell you that your current regulatory stance is to blame and you jump straight to the total and complete anarchy regulations accusation. It is people like you that helped give us the choice between Hillary and Trump, you are so suck in your dogma you have no brainma to think withma!

            You are such a waste to time talking to.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 1:26pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

              “This is why you are full of cognitive dissonance.”

              You do at least one well. And that’s project your flaws like a champion.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Chip, 1 May 2018 @ 11:28am

            Re: Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

            It's Very "simple"! If you don't Like your "ISP", just "don't" use the Interne!

            Like Me! I don't use the Internet.

            Now, "you" sycophantic Idiots may Say, Chip, you Obviously are Use the Internet right "now", because you area potsting on "Techdirt"!

            You say that Becauspe you are a sSyponcntic Idiot. And not Smart like me! I am very "smart". Very much Smarter than all you Sycophantic Idiots. You can "tell" that I am Smart because I am always talking about How SMART I AM, which is a Thing that "smart" people Do! We are not Controlled by the Government, because we are too Smart for That.

            You Cyocphantic Idiots may try and Tell me that I am using the "Internet" right "now", but I KNOW the "truth", which is that you are all just Hallucinations brought about by the Lead in my Delicious, DELICIOUS "paint" chips, that I Eat, because I am Smart ,and not a Sheeple who listens to Government "regulations" like You!

            Every Nation eats the Paint chips it Deserves!

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 1:02pm

          Re: Re: Noose vs Axe

          Oh look it’s one of the two quotes you know. Next your going to tell us both sides are bad. For an encore are you going to insult your betters and them proclaim your innocence when they call you out on your obvious bullshit? Of course you are. It’s all you’ve got. That and running away like a bitch.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 12:58pm

      Re: Regulation

      You complain like a two year old not getting a cookie and have about as much self awareness and argumentative capacity. Now run away before someone hands you your ass... again.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      I.T. Guy, 1 May 2018 @ 1:18pm

      Re: Regulation

      Next time one of those energy suppliers call you. Go ahead and sign up. Come back in 3 months and let us know how energy deregulation works out for ya.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 2 May 2018 @ 9:33am

        Re: Re: Regulation

        Yeas ago I wasted about 30 minutes of some telemarketers day asking him about the solar energy system he was pushing, fun times. I was going over with him the cost/benefit analysis that I scratched together on the fly, because he did not have one, and came to the conclusion that it would take about ten years to recoup the initial investment. He seemed to not disagree and then I informed him that was not a good decision for me due to the fact that I was moving out of state next month. He was not very happy with me but it was well worth it.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    SirWired, 1 May 2018 @ 8:18am

    LOL, re: the TechDirt acquisition plan

    "And if a deal was inevitable for survival, there's plenty of potential merger partners (from Dish Networks to a major cable company like Charter Spectrum) that could have been pursued without eliminating a major competitor."

    Why would a TV broadcaster or cable company want to buy a cell phone network? How would THAT solve Sprint's problems with it being an uncompetitive network with a shrinking customer base, heavy debt, and no money to fund upgrades?

    Yeah, one of those other companies could bundle phone service with their other services as a promotion, but they could do that today if they chose without actually buying a cell carrier. (Heck, they could even set up their MVNO for minimal cost.) It might make some sense if Sprint were a healthy business not in need of a major capital infusion (driving up the cost of the acquisition by a lot), but they aren't.

    Lastly, I find it hilarious that the "up to 30,000" job cut number is being accepted uncritically, since it makes no sense. (The number was likely developed by somebody that punched some numbers into a hacked-together spreadsheet and didn't actually check Sprint's current employee base to figure out if the estimate passed a sanity check.) TechDirt would never let a telco get away with ludicrous figures like that, but apparently they are perfectly acceptable if they support the narrative TD is sticking to.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      James Burkhardt (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 10:27am

      Re: LOL, re: the TechDirt acquisition plan

      Sprint has already seemed to turn a corner financially. Techdirt mentioned in in the article. Recent financial reports show positive improvement on the fiscal front.

      Moreover, using Sprint (a big name) rather than some upstart MVNO might make the bundle feel worth more. Humans value brands, after all.

      I note that this article does not list "up to 30,000". And while I am quoting you, making the quotes appropriate, this article does not use that quote, making your use a bit disingenuous. The article lists the number cited in the article, 10,000-30,000. And that article does the sanity check, noting that while the number is not itemized, we can infer from history that aside from direct employees, there are a number of ripple effects to vendors, suppliers and business partners that can cost jobs. And the article cites a second researcher that estimates 20k in direct 'payroll' losses, or jobs held by employees directly employed by Sprint or T-Mobile. And a further analyst thinks thats too high, with only 10,000 job losses. Leading to the range. The range used in the Techdirt article comes directly from the linked article, which notes division among analysts.

      By giving that range, and citing a paper which notes several different conclusions that lend to that range, I feel the reporting is appropriate. "up to 30,000" would be inflammatory language, designed to make you forget the 'up to' and only remember the '30,000'.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        SirWired, 1 May 2018 @ 4:07pm

        Re: Re: LOL, re: the TechDirt acquisition plan

        Again, if a Telco had cited a similar stat, but talking about similar (wide) range of jobs created due to the merger, TD would totally have made fun of it and talked about how unlikely it was, and how sloppy the stats were.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 5:35pm

      Re: LOL, re: the TechDirt acquisition plan

      @spirited:
      Dumbness, reading comprehension man. They claim they're going to grow 30,000 not shrink 30,000.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Shadow-Slider, 1 May 2018 @ 8:32am

    Megamerger

    The problem with calling it a megamerger is the resulting company is still smaller than AT&T or Verizon individually.
    So there are only two logical possibilities, allow T-Mobile and Sprint to merge or break At&T and Verizon into multiple companies the same size T-Mobile and Sprint.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TDR, 1 May 2018 @ 9:40am

    Yet another reason why companies should have to stand or fall completely on their own. No mergers, no acquisitions, no rights of personhood whatsoever. They should be treated like the artificial constructs they are.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Thad, 1 May 2018 @ 11:23am

      Re:

      While I certainly agree that corporate rights should be scaled back, I don't think you've thought through what "no rights of personhood whatsoever" actually means.

      Do you not believe that companies should be able to enter into contracts? That's a right of personhood, and it's pretty tough to run a company without it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 11:44am

        Re: Re:

        When will we allow a corporation to run for office?

        ... oppps - too late.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 12:00pm

        Re: Re:

        The ATF has been doing just that, cracking down hard on "corporate persons" when it comes to gun registrations, such as creating Rule 41F, which literally castrates the "corporate person" as far as legal rights go.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 9:55am

    if we fall for this crock of shit, we will deserve everything we get!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jinxed (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 10:37am

    There's a fundamental problem with this article and it's ignoring the obvious: even if there are 4 carriers or just 3 carriers, THERE IS NO COMPETITION IN THIS SPACE.

    There hasn't been in decades, just like the cable industry.

    Competition means competing on price, which none of these companies have ever lowered. Each has the same, identical entry price point for the same, identical features.

    Now with Zero Rating!

    No one cares about this merger. No one cars it'll cost jobs. It's between two of the smallest carriers in the US, and even after the merger, will still be the smallest carrier of Big 3.

    In addition, the article loves to believe these jobs will be "safe" without the merger, but that's a false position to make.

    Sprint has been losing customers over the past 5 years, and it hasn't done much to "expand" its business. Retail shops (or more accurately, kiosks) have been shutting down for a while now.

    These people *are* losing their jobs now. This merger won't stop this.

    A business can't compete if it doesn't have any customers. History shows this to be true as well.

    I'm not harping on the position of the article. I'm harping that it's using the same crap tactics at pushing an agenda most other "point" articles have been making of late.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 11:47am

    1 person = fraud, 2 people = Collusion, 3 companies = ChaChing..

    So just the fact that the major 3 companies don't compete on price can be seen as possible market collusion (everyone agrees that only raising prices is the way to go, everyone agrees that only ratcheting up copyright protections is the way to go, etc).

    We all live with the Corporate Overlords we create...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    tom (profile), 1 May 2018 @ 11:58am

    If it goes through we wind up with three 500lb Gorillas 'competing' in the space. Currently we have two 500lb Gorillas and two 250lb Gorillas. And neither of the 250lb Gorillas is doing that great financially. If one of them goes belly up, the others get to pick over the carcass with a lot less effective oversight from the regulators.

    Which is better?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    bshock, 1 May 2018 @ 3:56pm

    This merger is offensive and counterproductive. I would much rather see Sprint and T-Mobile broken into several smaller companies.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 4:02pm

    The author implies that if Sprint had announced it was being acquired by Dish Network or Charter Spectrum, that would have been okay. If Sprint had in fact announced plans to merge with a company like Dish Network or Charter Spectrum, would this article have a different tone? One where the author explains that not all mergers are bad, and this is what's needed to preserve competition in the cell carrier space? Or would it be pretty much the same decrying of consolidation, with just the company's names switched?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 May 2018 @ 7:47pm

    You forgot to mention "synergies".

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Coyne Tibbets (profile), 2 May 2018 @ 4:09am

    Time for skullduggery

    I don't know why anyone is worried about this. Verizon and AT&T, respectively, control 35% and 33% of the market. T-Mobile and Sprint combined would control 30% (right now their respective shares are 17% and 13%). There is no way that AT&T and Verizon are ever going to allow this to happen, because it would turn also-ran upstarts into a competitor on equal footing. Now the skullduggery starts.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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