USDOJ and five states challenged the joint venture between Comcast and NBC Universal, alleging that it would harm competition in cable programming, with Comcast controlling NBC and NBCU programming. The parties reached a settlement, and the FCC also reached a separate settlement with Comcast and NBC. The settlements impose a number of restrictions and limitations on the merger to ensure that competing distributors have fair access to NBC and NBCU content. The settlements also address several areas of the joint venture’s operations. The DOJ and states’ settlement particularly focuses on requiring Comcast/NBC to make content available to online video distributors; requires NBC to relinquish all management rights in connection with Hulu.com, a popular video website; and prohibits Comcast from retaliating against content providers who sell to online distributors, entering into exclusive agreements that might limit access to programs, and slowing broadband signals when broadband customers view non-Comcast content.
New York v. Tele-Communications Inc., Not Reported in F.Supp., 1993 WL 527984 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 14, 1993), 1993-2 Trade Cases P 70, 404
Defendant cable system operators, subsidiaries and a satellite cable supplier formed a monopoly in restraint of trade in the delivery of multichannel subscription television programming.