O'Rielly Votes to OK AT&T-DirecTV

Commissioner Michael O'Rielly said Thursday he had voted to approve the proposed $48.5 AT&T/DirecTV merger.

The chairman circulated the order earlier this week, so he is on board as well. The deal will almost certainly secure at least the needed three votes.

"After reading the Order as prepared by Commission staff, reviewing the voluminous record in the proceeding, and listening to interested parties, I voted the item this afternoon," said O'Rielly. "To be clear, this process shouldn’t have taken this long, and we shouldn’t have been so cavalier with the Commission’s merger review “shot clock,” but at least we have arrived at this final stage."

The order applies various conditions on the deal, including on buildouts and interconnection and online content. O'Rielly did not weigh in on those, saying he would released a more "substantive statement" as soon as fellow commissioners had voted the item.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.