A merger between Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE:TWC) would be a catastrophic recipe on par with giving a drunk Justin Bieber the keys to a $250,000 Lamborghini.
That’s how a consumer group spins it in a new satirical video aimed at raising awareness about the dangers of increased consolidation in the cable industry. The 45-second video, dubbed “Together Isn’t Better,” weaves bubbly graphics through a montage featuring pop-culture combos that didn’t work out so well, including the odd coupling of Dennis Rodman and Kim Jong-un, and the ill-fated marriage between Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries. The Bieber/Lamborghini pairing is a reference to the pop star’s notable behind-the-wheel antics, which got him arrested on drag racing and DUI charges earlier this year.
“Together is better? Yeah, not always,” the video’s narrator says.
The video was produced by Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, which has been among the most vocal critics of the proposed Comcast-TWC merger. If approved by regulators, the merger would combine the country’s two largest cable companies, giving Comcast control of one-third of the pay-television market. Consumers Union contends that the combination would result in higher cable bills and even worse customer service. The video’s title is a knock at Comcast’s own catchphrase, “Together Is Better,” which the company has been using in its attempts to win public support for the merger.
Delara Derakhshani, policy counsel for Consumers Union, said the company’s promises of faster Internet speeds and a more reliable network are little more than a snow job. “Comcast is spending millions trying to convince frustrated consumers that our lives will be better if it can merge with Time Warner Cable,” Derakhshani said in a statement. “But combining these two huge companies with lousy reputations for customer satisfaction will just make things worse.”
The video ends with a call to action, asking viewers to tell regulators to deny the merger before it’s too late. The Federal Communications Commission is currently accepting public comments on the issue, with a filing deadline set for Aug. 25. Consumers Union has more information at HearUsNow.org.
Watch the full video below.