CA Cable Suit

San Francisco, CA -- A fledgling cable TV channel hoping to launch this fall has filed a complaint in federal court against the country's two largest cable TV operators. The complaint says Comcast and Time Warner cable are violating anti-trust laws.

The America Channel has filed a 25-page complaint claiming that Comcast and Time Warner -- the nation's two biggest cable companies -- are hurting its chances of launching.

Joe Alioto, a well known anti-trust attorney, says Comcast and Time Warner have refused to carry the America Channel. The two cable giants are in the process of jointly buying Adelphia, the country's fifth largest cable company. Their purchase of Adelphia, he says, will shut yet another door for the America channel.

Comcast would not comment about Alioto's complaint. It would not confirm or deny that it turned down the America Channel.

A Time Warner cable spokeswoman calls the complaint "entirely frivolous." The company is "confident it will not impair closing of the Adelphia transaction."

Comcast and Time Warner separately own over a dozen cable TV channels that they carry.

While cable companies tout how many choices viewers have, ultimately they decide whether new channels are carried or not.

The Federal Trade Commission has already reviewed the case on anti-trust concerns. Alioto has asked for a jury trial and hopes to have the case heard before the deal is scheduled to be completed on July 31st.


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