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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Comcast’s tyranny threatens internet

Veronica De La Cruz

It’s no surprise that Comcast Corp. received the annual Consumerist’s Worst Company in America award.

I’ve had to rely on Comcast Corp.’s internet services for a year now. If I’ve learned anything, it’s that the customer’s needs aren’t always top priority with the awful customer service and slow internet speed.

In the article “As Netflix Resists, Most Firms Just Try to Befriend Comcast,” Jonathan Mahler explains how Comcast Corp. has created a $45 billion merger with Time Warner Cable Inc., which also competes with a similar level of customer dissatisfaction. This will essentially help it compete with other companies such as Google, who are clearly doing well.

With less competition over price and services, Comcast Corp. would have control over 40 percent of the country’s internet service coverage.

I can’t help but feel completely worried and taken advantage of. If it’s successful, Comcast Corp. will be able to decide which sites customers are allowed to visit.

Comcast Corp.’s already insane prices should provide us with better services rather than allow it to pick and choose which websites it wants people to visit.
High-speed internet access is more important than ever, whether someone is trying to get a job, start a business, get an education or just watch a movie.

Netflix, being one of the sites I had trouble loading, seems to already be ahead of the game and has arranged payment terms with Comcast Corp.

The company is playing it safe and waiting to speak out against the merger until after it has reached a multiyear agreement with Comcast Corp. that would secure faster and more reliable access to its subscribers.

College students, being one of Netflix’ main subscribers, are going to be even more affected by this than ever before. Every time my roommates and I try to watch Netflix at home, we spend more time waiting for it to load than actually watching the show itself.

If Comcast Corp.’s main issue is to be a better competitor against a company like Google, it should expand its service and increase its internet speed instead of taking it away from loyal customers. I pay $70 a month just for internet. The least they could do is let me have my Netflix binge that I look forward to at the end of the week.

A petition against this rule has since been created to prevent the merger from being finalized. This case is expecting to have a second public airing with a hearing before the House Committee on the Judiciary May 15 in Washington .

Since many agree this is completely outrageous, signing the petition will ensure that customers’ voices will be heard.

Veronica De La Cruz can be reached at [email protected] or @Veronica_dlc on Twitter.

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