It seems the overwhelming response regarding the AT&T and T-Mobile merger has been opposition. Sprint, for example, has been incredibly vocal about the negative implications of the deal. State and federal government officials have been publicly opposed to the deal, too, stating that such a deal would disrupt competition in the wireless industry in the U.S. Now customers are beginning to take action, too.
The New York-based firm of Bursor & Fisher law firm filed a 236-page arbitration demand on Thursday, alleging that the proposed deal would harm competition in violation of the Clayton Antitrust Act.
Although the deal already requires approval from the Department of Justice and Federal Communications Commission, the law firm is seeking to represent individual AT&T customers who want to bring their own legal challenges to the deal.
Concerned customers are worried about the control that AT&T will have over the market if it were to grow to be the dominant carrier in the wireless industry. Even Verizon, who is currently the largest would have difficulty surpassing AT&T if it were to acquire T-Mobile for $39 billion.
The merger is also causing a lot of confusion with some customers. Does it mean T-Mobile customers will get the iPhone? Will AT&T raise prices and limit handset options? What will happen with T-Mobile contracts?
The lawfirm responsible for bringing the suit against AT&T has set up a website called FightTheMerger.com to explain its case.
“If we bring 100 cases and we lose 99 of them we are going to win,” Bursor told AllThingsD. “We just need one arbitrator to say, ‘Wait a minute, this merger is going to hurt competition.’”
It seems that many parties are opposed to this merger, and that consumers and lawyers alike are willing to fight and do what’s necessary to prevent it. What’s your take on the merger? Should the two carriers be allowed by the Department of Justice to move forward?