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What competition?

| Sunday, March 2, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Reject the Comcast bid for enlargement by acquiring Time Warner Cable ( “Power, pricing at play in $45B Comcast deal” ).

Comcast talks of “competition.” What competition? One receives a stream of sales promotions from Verizon and Comcast, each offering supposedly earthshaking deals on phone, TV and Internet services. Interestingly, there seems neither much difference in the services offered nor in the pricing thereof. Whither goest the “competition”? Seems like a repeat of the lockstep movement in prices one sees at gas stations, without regard to the name on the pump. That, Virginia, remains grist for another mill on another day.

Talk of strange goings on, though: Try calling Verizon tech support. Callers are treated to a virtually unending chain of recorded messages and truly idiotic “elevator music,” along with sales pitches for one thing or another. Eventually, one gets to speak with a real human being, a technician usually able to fix problems, but only after a significant amount of the caller's time is wasted. One wonders who dreamed up this “system” and what they might have been smoking at the time.

Alan Schultz

McCandless

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