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BUSINESS
February 26, 2015 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
Comcast Corp. CEO Brian Roberts told analysts Tuesday that he hopes federal regulators will give their full attention to the company's proposed $45 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable Inc. after Thursday's scheduled FCC vote on net neutrality. Roberts declined to be more specific on the merger review, though he said the Federal Communications Commission had an informal deadline of finishing its review of Comcast/Time Warner Cable by the end of March. The Justice Department also is reviewing the megadeal, which has run into stiff opposition from Dish Network, Netflix, and advocacy groups, and seems bogged down in Washington.
BUSINESS
February 25, 2015 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
Entertainment Studios Networks Inc., a California company that calls itself a "100 percent African American-owned media company," has sued Comcast Corp. and Time Warner Cable Inc., claiming the cable firms have engaged in racial discrimination by failing to distribute its cable channels. Also named as defendants in the suit, filed Friday in federal court in Los Angeles, were the Rev. Al Sharpton, the National Urban League, and the NAACP. The suit, which seeks $20 billion in damages, claims that Sharpton and the civil rights groups entered into "sham" diversity agreements with Comcast that worked to the detriment of Entertainment Studios.
BUSINESS
February 23, 2015 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Free the Phillies! Free the Flyers! Free the Sixers! Fat chance, you say? Maybe so. But that goal tops my wish list for this year's franchise-renewal negotiations between Philadelphia and its richest corporate citizen: loosening Comcast Corp.'s unfair and damaging grip on most of Philly's big-league sports scene. Like the frog who thinks he's just basking in a warm bath, we Philadelphians have gotten poached without ever quite acknowledging it. We love our home teams - even when they're as maddeningly mediocre as the recent Flyers and Phillies, or as bafflingly managed as today's Sixers.
BUSINESS
February 23, 2015 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
The names some cable customers are being called after contacts with the companies that provide them services can be staggeringly profane: scatological and sexual, with allusions to body parts and perverted acts. They are often mailings of things like bills. Almost all of the names defy mention in a news story, but for some sense of it, here is one of the more temperate ones, received by a female Comcast customer: Super Bitch, which was first reported in the Chicago Tribune earlier this month.
BUSINESS
February 20, 2015 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
A California judge has recommended that state regulators approve Comcast Corp.'s proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable Inc., a first for the megadeal by a major government entity. But the recommendation comes with a list of conditions that would tighten regulation on the Philadelphia cable-TV giant and expand its discounted broadband service for low-income families. Comcast's $10-a-month discounted service, available nationally in Comcast cable franchise areas, is now restricted to poor families with schoolchildren.
NEWS
February 16, 2015
ISSUE | CABLE WOES It's how much more? In December, I agreed to a new Comcast contract at a total cost of $173. Last week, I asked Comcast to add one channel to my service, BeIn Sport. The next day, Comcast informed me that my monthly contract price was $330. There followed three hours of entirely fruitless attempts on the phone to bring some sanity to this situation. How on earth can any regulatory authority allow this level of corporate incompetence and indifference to continue?
BUSINESS
February 11, 2015 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
Gripping his TV remote, Bob Klewans, 75, wandered into the Xfinity store on South Columbus Boulevard one recent afternoon. Unlike in years past, he was met by a Comcast greeter and chatted up by one of the store's managers. He had a problem with his remote, he said, flourishing it. They talked, and Klewans was told he could get a new one. Klewans, a retiree who seemed happy for the friendly interaction, gushed about his treatment and the remodeled store, one of the busiest in the Philadelphia area.
NEWS
February 9, 2015 | By Ronnie Polaneczky, Daily News Columnist
LAST WEEKEND, I told how Center City couple Diana and Jason Airoldi finally got their Comcast cable and internet hookup after six full weeks of broken appointments by the cable giant. Why? Because I took pity on the couple and called to the ultimate authority at Comcast Corp. - Suzanne Roberts, the 92-year-old mother of the company's CEO. In less than a day, Comcast trucks were at the Airoldi home, and the problem was solved. So what do I do now about Sandy and Charles Arnold, who have been trying since Dec. 14 to get Comcast cable and Internet at their Ocean City home?
BUSINESS
February 8, 2015 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
After months of delays, New York utility commissioners have yet to vote on Comcast Corp.'s proposed $45 billion deal for Time Warner Cable Inc. The state's Public Service Commission now says it could vote at its Feb. 26 meeting. One opponent of the deal said he thought the New York action might be perpetually postponed while the Federal Communications Commission and the Justice Department review the proposed transaction. This would allow the independent state agency to base its action on what the federal agencies do. Comcast announced the proposed megamerger last February.
NEWS
February 5, 2015 | BY HANNAH SASSAMAN
THE BIGGEST questions for Philly candidates in 2015: How will we fund our schools? How will we ensure that, in the poorest big city in the coutry, poor communities have the resources they need to live lives of dignity? The elephant in the room is Comcast. Our hometown giant is one of the world's richest companies, earning $2.59 billion in profit in the last reported quarter, up from $1.73 billion year over year. Most of that money comes from us - Comcast subscribers - through local deals that Comcast negotiates, community to community.
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