The following is an excerpt from reuters.com | April 5, 2018 |
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Justice Department presented evidence on Thursday to show that AT&T (T.N), owner of DirecTV, viewed buying Time Warner (TWX.N) as a way to make viewers stick with their pay TV service instead of moving to cheaper online providers.
The department has sued to block AT&T’s $85.4 billion acquisition of Time Warner, saying the deal could raise prices for pay-TV rivals and subscribers while hampering the development of online video.
In a hearing before U.S. Judge Richard Leon, Justice Department attorney Julie Elmer cited an email and report in which Gregory Manty, a director of corporate strategy for AT&T, indicated that buying Time Warner’s content would allow AT&T to slow the decline of pay TV, which was described as a “cash cow.”
Elmer pushed Manty to agree that the report had been “sanitized,” noting that some phrases were removed by AT&T executives or outside counsel.
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