Madison, TN asked in Antitrust for Tennessee

Q: How is Comcast not an illegal oligopoly?

Can a lawyer explain this situation for me? Comcast is refusing to allow Google Fiber access to utility lines where Comcast has a set box set up. This is slowing down the speed at which Fiber internet speeds are rolled out in Nashville tremendously. Comcast has no real competitors in the Nashville area and they are using anti-competitive practices to delay the implementation of a real competitor. How is this not an example of an illegal oligopoly?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Glenn B. Manishin
Glenn B. Manishin
  • Antitrust Law Lawyer
  • Warrenton, VA

A: Oligopolies are not illegal in the U.S. Typically, "pole attachments" are made on poles owned by the local electric or telephone companies, which Comcast does not control. For broadband Internet services, Comcast may have a monopoly, but unlawful monopolization requires a company to have gained its position by exclusionary practices; Google is building its fiber business without relying on interconnection to the Comcast network.

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