Verizon & MCI : A Good Deal for Consumers
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Richard Morrison, 202.331.2273
Washington, D.C., February 14, 2005—During today's announcement of its acquisition of MCI Corp, Verizon Communications Inc. urged regulators to act quickly and approve the merger. The merger, like that of SBC and AT&T, is a pro-competitive development for a changing communications market. In an environment where cable, telephone and wireless companies all compete against each other, the combination of these two providers is the natural progression of a communications market working for consumers.
The increasing ability of consumers to substitute different forms of communication—landline telephone, wireless, Voice over IP—for another means an expanding marketplace that transcends the old public utility model of the telecommunications industry. This competition from other technology platforms protects consumers from rising prices. Network integration, such as we will see in a combined Verizon/MCI and SBC/AT&T, is a requirement in order to compete effectively with other communications networks.
This merger may be just the beginning of the changes we need to see in the telecom world of higher bandwidth and digital content delivery. As we revisit the 1996 telecom act, there may be even more shakeups. Regulators need to reassess the role of antitrust in the modern tech world and allow market institutions rather than yesterday’s regulatory policy to guide tomorrow's tech world.
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