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AT&T's court victory Tuesday allowing its purchase of Time Warner is expected to usher in a period of industry consolidation — particularly between media, tech and telecom companies.
Why it matters: Hundreds of billions of dollars worth of potential deals were at stake pending this decision. With Judge Richard Leon's ruling, it's not just AT&T seen as getting a green light, report Axios' David McCabe and Sara Fischer.
The first thing to watch for is a fight between Comcast and Disney over 21st Century Fox's entertainment assets — like FX, National Geographic and its movie studios. Comcast had said it planned to make a bid, but multiple reports suggested it delayed a formal bid until a decision came down in the AT&T and Time Warner case, since the deals were so similar.
What else to expect: The ruling will put more attention on both similarly-structured vertical mergers — deals between companies in different markets — and horizontal mergers, deals between companies in the same market. Some of the big pending deals include:
The bigger picture: Just because AT&T gets to buy Time Warner doesn't guarantee that every similar deal will go through. Indeed, Leon insisted as much at the end of his 172-page opinion, writing “the temptation by some to view this decision as being something more than a resolution of this specific case should be resisted by one and all!”
Go deeper: Read the full post here.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
The court's thumbs up for the AT&T-Time Warner deal, combined with the end of net neutrality rules, has the potential to reshape the internet media landscape.
Why it matters: Together, these events of the last 48 hours could open a path to a network that's very different from the freewheeling one you grew up with or first got to know in the 1990s or 2000s.
Worst case: In this scenario, the giant companies that supply your internet access (like AT&T, Verizon and Comcast) try to outflank the giant companies that provide most of your online content and services (like Google, Facebook and Apple) — and consumers lose out.
Who owns what: Here's how much will be in the hands of just three companies:
Between the lines: The service providers all say they don't want to limit choice, and that they have no intention of blocking or prioritizing content.
But, but, but: The tech industry regularly experiences waves of mergers, and much of the time they flop. (See: Time Warner’s last world-changing hookup, with America Online in 2000.)
Go deeper: Read the full post here.
Makan Delrahim after Tuesday's ruling. Photo: Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images
The Justice Department has days to decide whether to continue its lengthy fight against AT&T's acquisition of Time Warner — but an appeal may not stop the deal from closing in the meantime.
The bigger picture: DOJ doesn't just have to worry about this deal, but about every future antitrust case where this ruling could constrain its ability to act.
The other side: AT&T says it still expects the deal to close ahead of the deadline next week.
More: David and Sara describe it a bit further here.
While the impact of the AT&T-Time Warner case is the big deal, its means of delivery was also something to behold. During the judge's presentation of his decision, those inside his courtroom couldn't text, blog or tweet, while those outside could only speculate on what was transpiring.
Inside the courtroom: With the room's most visible clock stuck at five minutes past five and a total ban on electronics, those inside the courtroom felt isolated from the rest of the world throughout the trial. But on Tuesday, it felt hermetically sealed, according to David, who was covering the trial and the ruling.
Outside the courtroom: The digerati mused about what was taking place inside Leon's courtroom, while nervous editors checked the competition to make sure no one had managed to sneak out a scoop. Here are some of the best tweets:
The big picture: With airplanes, hospitals and nearly and every other modern gathering point up, there aren't many places left where people are forced to exist without the internet and mobile devices. Only the far wilderness, federal courts and prisons come to mind.
In one of the bigger announcements to come from the E3 video game show in Los Angeles, Nintendo announced Tuesday that Fortnite was coming immediately to its Nintendo Switch portable console.
Why it matters: The move brings the hottest title in video games — it has 125 million players in less than a year — to the hottest console.
Yes, but: Sony is blocking users from playing on its PS4 consoles and the Nintendo Switch, limiting some of the impressive cross-platform play that Fortnite has enabled, The Verge reported.
In case you need some inspiration, a reminder on the value of persistence or just a feel-good video, I give you THIS.