Time Warner and Comcast are looking to merge. Good luck trying to fight this one. If we learned anything by the approval of the American Airlines/US Airways merger, it’s that the “brand of the American consumer” is dead.
You better have a much stronger reason to block this merger than simply saying it is not in the consumer’s interest.
Really, can anyone argue that this merger is in the consumer interest? Let me get this straight, the two largest cable providers in the US want to merge even if the merger does not even promise the possibility of consumer savings.
After the American Airlines/US Airways deal, it is not even a necessary condition that the merger must provide consumers with more choice or market competitiveness. All that matters is that the merged companies make more money for its shareholders. This is about increasing their margins as we unplug our cable boxes.
Why is the consumer no longer represented? Because we have laced our consumer brand with indifference.
There is no such thing as the American Consumer and, because the brand no longer exists, it is no longer represented. Don’t mistake what I am saying with the idea that no one is speaking to the consumer’s benefit. What I am saying is that no one listens.
In an age when the business of America is absolutely the business of investor return, we actually believe that we sit squarely in that seat. We believe we are more investor than we are consumer. As long as we believe that, we can predict where the axe will fall. On us.
Brands are owned and honed by those that hold it dear. All great brands do this – Apple, Google, BMW, and your favorite beer. But we all hate the cable companies and yet no one really cares.
Think about it. The cable industry says it won’t limit competition because it doesn’t currently compete. And it would be right. Shame on us. We don’t get the oversight we need. We get the oversight we deserve.