FCC Moves Closer to Finalizing Comcast & NBC Merger

Published 3 years ago by

NBC Universal Comcast FCC Moves Closer to Finalizing Comcast & NBC Merger

On Thursday, Comcast cleared what may be the most important hurdle in its ongoing efforts to acquire NBC Universal. Julius Genachowski, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, is moving to approve Comcast’s proposed merger, effectively putting the deal up for vote before the entire body.

The announcement comes as the FCC winds down its review of a large and controversial proposed merger that has raised widespread concern about everything from media ownership to broadcast television programming.

The estimated timeline for the merger’s implementation is now projected to be early 2011. At present, the Justice Department has yet to complete its official review and investigation into the deal – although a court challenge is not anticipated.

However, according to the Washington Post, Senior FCC officials confirm that an approval of the proposed merger would, in fact, be “conditional.” Specifics were not given with regard to the specific “conditions,” although general obligations would be Comcast’s responsibility – such as allowing consumers to view and access NBC programming from Comcast competitors – including those that dwell exclusively online. The conditions vaguely alluded to are still subject to change, as Genachowski has yet to confer with his four commissioner colleagues, regarding his draft order for the merger’s approval.

Shortly after Genachowski’s announcement on Thursday,  Comcast Executive Vice President David Cohen issued a statement noting the following:

“The FCC and Department of Justice have made substantial progress toward approval of the Comcast-GE transaction relating to NBC Universal. We are gratified that the FCC Chairman’s Office has circulated an order to the offices of all commissioners that would lead to approval of our transaction.”

comcast nbc FCC Moves Closer to Finalizing Comcast & NBC Merger

Thursday’s promising developments for the proposed Comcast-NBC deal come after months of suspenseful reviews rife with politics and the strong arm tactics of would-be opponents to the merger’s authorization. According to the FCC, officials have conferred with countless stakeholders to gather information and collect feedback during three intensive rounds of public comment – that also included meetings with elected officials to discuss the merger and its potential implications.

While there is no established timetable in place for the remaining commissioners to review, and sign off on the merger’s implementation, the voting and its procedural processes should take no longer than a few weeks.

Source: Washington Post

5 Comments

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  1. Why is this the first time I’ve heard or read anything about this merger?

    • Don’t know:

      http://www.google.com/search?q=nbc+comcast

      Vic

    • The FCC acts like (or is regarded by the radio and television industry as) a secret police of sorts keeping an eye on content that morally opposes their views of acceptable public material. No one wants to incite them cause it’s like putting a target on your back, plus the FCC has free reign to dole out steep fines and restrictions based on their director’s current agenda. You may (or may not) remember the Howard Stern/Michael Powell clash of the mid ’00′s which succesfully sent shock jocks from public free radio to private satellite radio. The stance of Stern being that his and all dj’s free speech ammendment rights were being violated by the FCC’s constant unfair and expensive fines that forced the production companies to sensor/change the broadcasted show. You wonder why you haven’t heard anything, hmmm.

  2. Holy Crap! Reading this article for the second time really makes me worried about possible future monopolies when broadband services have ownership of broadcast/production companies like NBC/Universal. A continuing series of articles into the possibilities of these mergers/takeovers is needed.

  3. @worthing, you sound like an intelligent blogger. Your not aware that a few days ago the FCC decided to take over (the internet) under the guise of “net neutrality”?

    Might wanna look in that direction. Its got more to do with your internet reality then NBC or Comcast having a love child,,,

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