ShareThis Page
AT&T loses; Consumers win |

AT&T loses; Consumers win

| Friday, March 26, 2004 12:00 a.m

A recent federal appeals court decision requiring Verizon and other regional telephone companies to lease their local phone lines to competitors is not something dire that “could result in higher rates and reduced service for consumers”(“Experts slam local phone ruling,” March 13).

Consumers will continue to benefit from telephone competition. The federal court’s ruling has no effect on Verizon’s most significant competitive threats — wireless and cable.

The market will continue to drive innovation, better service and lower prices from all providers. But the issue is not about competition or phone rates. It’s about profits.

The federal court’s ruling could mean lower profits for companies like AT&T that have built their businesses by leasing parts of Verizon’s network at unfair, below-cost prices. And the only companies at risk for raising prices are ones, like AT&T, that have relied on these lucrative leasing arrangements to pad their profits — not Verizon, wireless providers or cable companies.

The court’s ruling would force AT&T to compete the way other companies do. It’s up to AT&T to decide whether that means lower profits or higher prices for its customers.

Russell R. KemererPittsburgh The writer is assistant vice president of business affairs for Verizon Pennsylvania.

Categories: News
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.