AT&T issues “told you so” statement to FCC after T-Mobile layoffs


After news that T-Mobile will be closing seven call centers and terminating the jobs of over 3,000 employees, AT&T couldn’t turn down the chance to get in one last dig at the FCC for shutting down a proposed merger between the two telecom companies. Jim Cicconi, AT&T’s senior executive vice president of external and legislative affairs (quite the title), took to the carrier’s public policy blog to do his best job of spreading egg on the face of federal regulators.

“Normally, we’d not comment on something like this. But I feel this is an exception for one big reason — only a few months ago AT&T promised to preserve these very same call centers and jobs if our merger was approved. We also predicted that if the merger failed, T-Mobile would be forced into major layoffs.”

That’s not even a roundabout way of saying “told you so.” That’s a pretty direct way of saying it. I especially like the first line, which only adds to the thick air of bitterness surrounding Cicconi’s comments. He continues to further pick at the FCC’s decision, which was based in part on evidence that approval of the merger would come at the cost of thousands of jobs lost. Instead, Cicconi chides, “rarely are regulatory agency’s predictive judgements proven so wrong so fast.”

The outright frankness of the full statement makes it a worthwhile read. It’s as if Cicconi takes personal offense to the FCC’s disapproval of the merger. Rarely do we see this sort of public reaction from a high-ranking executive. Head over to the link below for the full read.

[via AT&T]

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  1. The merger should have just gone thru…

    1. see above

    2. NO, absolutely not! The merger should not have gone through, and thankfully it didn’t.

      T-Mobile is going to try and preserve as many of the jobs as possible by offering relocation packages.

      Look, the truth is it doesn’t matter if these jobs are lost today or two years from now, which is what At&t would have done and on a much larger scale. All companies are moving customer service call centers overseas. It is a sad fact we just have to live with. If moving business overseas is what you have to do in the name of profit, then that is all share holders care about. Do you think Apple would have 100billion cash if they manufactured their products in the states instead of in China? Share holders don’t care about American jobs, they care about profit.

      The truth, At&t would have done the exact same thing, and HAS done the exact same thing in the past. 

      Further, the merger would have been detrimental to all Americans, every single one of us who owns a cell phone or plans to own one. It would give Verizon and At&t even more power than they already do now. All Americans would find themselves getting less while being asked to pay more for it. 

      I can promise you the following things would occur with a stronger duopoly:

      – At&t would eventually layoff workers and move call centers overseas
      – Rate plans for both voice and data would increase on both Verizon and At&t
      – Data plans would drop in their cap allowance. Expect to pay 30 bucks for 1gig of data.
      – 2 year contract subsidizes would be gone, replaced by 3 or even 4 year contracts. Yes, believe it, and some carriers in some countries are already doing that.
      – Subsidized Smartphone prices would go up from 299 on Verizon to 399 or even 499, and then At&t would jump from 199.99 to 399 also. The phone manufacturers including Apple, HTC, and Samsung would follow by increasing their unsubsidized full retail price from the current 500-$700 to 1000-$1500. Believe it.

      -They would put into place even more erroneous fees:
      —Fee to talk to a rep if you call in more than once a month.
      —A convenience Fee to pay your bill online
      —Check processing fee if you mail in a check
      —Envelope opening fee if you mail in an envelope
      —Increased late fees
      —Late in your payment more than 5 days, your service is turned off and you must pay a fee to have it reinstated, plus now they will require a 200 dollar deposit per line, and you are still held at the terms of your 3 year contract and early termination fees.
      —Increased early termination fees on that new 3 or 4 year contract. 500 per line sounds good, ah heck lets make it 700 since the phones retail for $1500 now.
      —The crazy possible fees are endless
      – Profits for Verizon and At&t would increase at the expense of all Americans who own a cell phone. 

      I don’t like government intervention, but when it comes to the unethical business practices of these carriers we need more intervention into how these carriers are conducting business, not less.

      1. Wow, talk about fear mongering.  Your entire post was one big “if”, and a worst-case scenario at that – rising prices, rising rates, less customer care, blah blah blah.  Lemme guess, you think the Gov’t is actually concerned with consumers, as opposed to the highest paying special interests?

        You can paint the worse case scenario all you want; the fact is, neither you nor anyone else knows what would happen. For all you or anyone knows, AT&T may have used the extra spectrum they acquired to lower prices and increase their data caps, thereby undercutting and forcing Verizon to increase their cap or doing away with it entirely.

        1. LOL @wastry
          At&t lowering prices and icnreasing their data caps? Are we talking about the same At&t? The same At&t that throttled grandfathered unlimited data users to like 1.5gigs while others paying the same $30 got 3gigs.

          1. Competition does things to a company.  Nothing like a price war to get the juices flowing.

            The fact is, T-Mobile is a German company, and their US subsidiary hasn’t been making them the kind of money they expected – T-Mobile German, the parent company, has been looking to sell the US T-Mobile for awhile.  Better to auction off that spectrum to a company that can use it than let it rot

          2. Verizon Wireless is 45 percent a UK company. Verizon Wirless also known as Cellco Partnership is owned by UK’s Vodafone with a 45 percent ownership.

            What exactly is your point?

            You’re also the first person besides At&t to consider a loss of a national carrier as an increase in competition. 

            With your logic, why don’t we just get rid of Sprint too, Verizon can buy them. Let’s just leave Verizon and At&t as the only major national carriers. Man, that will really increase competition and lower prices!!!

          3. @vsucla:disqus  The free market should be allowed to operate as it wants.  Right now, Sprint and T-Mo are being held up by the Gov’t as they limp along.  Let them die; the last thing we need is another bail out, or the Gov’t propping up dying companies.
            If ATT and VZW start screwing consumers, they’ll be broken up just like Ma Bell was; if not, then let them slug it out.

        2.  You know very well that AT&T locks access on Android phones.

  2. i’m afraid of a huge monopoly as much as the next person, but in the case…I agreed with the merger.

    Also, WTF did Tmo do with the break up fee? That’s easily enough to keep these people around.

    1. T-mobile received some of AT&T’s spectrum, so they didn’t actually get money to keep these employees around.

      1. If I remember correctly they were getting 5mil + some of AT&Ts spectrum.

        1. Oops, I was going off memory as well. Looks like they only received $1 billion in spectrum.

      2. wrong. they got $3 billion and a $1 billion worth the spectrum

      3. T-Mobile parent company in the UK got the cash because of the failed merger not T-Mobile USA…..

        1. I could have swore the parent company was German, but who cares.

          1. Yea you’re right…it’s German.

          2. Yes, T-Mo parent company is German, and they’ve been trying to sell off the US unit for awhile now.  The US subsidiary just isn’t as profitable for them as their foreign subs, so the AT&T deal was a way for T-Mo to get out of the US

          3. You’re right its German……

  3. yea because no one wouldve gotten layofff after the merger /s

  4. Sour grapes, AT&T.

  5. I got really sick of hearing all the T-Mobile fanboys all crying out against the merger. This was a case of a failing company being bought out by a successful one. End of story. T-mobile will continue to fail, and it’s workers and customers will continue to to feel the brunt of the FCC not minding its own business. Maybe Sprint can hire all the laid off workers seeing as how they felt that the merger would be so bad for the economy.

    1. Get your facts straight you fucking noob. T-mobile has continued to post a profit unlike some other providers like sprint yet ignorant dumbasses like yourself are ignorant. T-Mobile may have lost a lot customers last quarter but that is by no means failing. Spring on the other hand may potentially go bankrupt and is bleeding miilions of dollars of failure every quarter. After failed deals with clealwire and lightsquared, as well as dropping billions of dollars for an iPhone, Spring is circling the drain. T-Mo on the other hand has a clear plan for recovery and LTE 10 in 2013. Hmmm maybe T-mobile will buy sprint and put it out of its misery. 

      ps, sprint fanboys like you are stupid as fuck, sprint service blows. slow and nonexistent piece of shit

      /end rant

      1. Dude. They are phone companies. No need to go all Lewis Black on anyone. Go have a drink and calm down. sheesh.

      2. Wow, talk about a corporate stoolie.   How do T-Mobile’s balls taste?

        1. like pinkberrys

      3. good…. let the butthurt flow through you….

        1. no worries bro i just popped a few laxatives.

      4. Sprint does sux. I was using Tmo on a family plan and was switched to Sprint. I hate it. It’s horrible. Sprint’s average 3G is as fast as Tmo’s 2G, which is there capped speed. So you still get unlimited data with Tmo. I don’t see what Sprint is bragging about.

        And I never knew dropped calls existed until I went to Sprint.

      5. dude i could give a rats azz bout this merger bs, who cares, nobody will ever be faster n better than verizon, tho they cost more, its worth the 90% of uninterupted service, other 10% which will are outages that will soon be fixed when they double up their footprint… that being said, tmo is nothing to brag about…their service sux just as bad as sprint….and their service is also almost as bad as your spelling…if ur gonna try to belittle people using your intellectual cuss words (just fyi, when u cuss, it shows your lack of intelligence) at least go the distance to spell shyt right, you are a loser and so are your parents for raising such a douche bag who can’t be sensible when other people are posting to a thread thats just serves no purpose, like your life for example… it really that big a deal that u had to come out and talk to people the way you did??? grow up and get a life R-tard.

        p.s. park your vehicle on a hill and put it in neutral then hurry around to the back and lay your head behind the tire, you probably look better that way, mostly because your mouth can’t move and your hands won’t be able to type anymore. thanx n advance .

    2. Actually, it was about one company with the high customer satisfaction rates being purchased by the one with the absolute worst satisfaction rates.  

    3.  The problem wasn’t about t-mobile being bought out by a larger company. The problem was that it was being bought out by AT&T…We didn’t want AT&T’s crap service.

  6. I knew this would happen.  I just feel sorry for those employees who lost their jobs because some idiots didn’t let the merger go through.

  7. AT&T is correct.  They wouldn’t have let 3,000 employees go.  They would have closed all their call centers and reopened them in India for pennies on the dollar.   AT&T is like all large corporations. Only cares about profit not people. AT&T is full of it.

    1. Correction, Manila in the Philippines where they already have outsourced some of their other call centers.

      1. You are probably right.  The Philippines is the new India for call centers.  A few cents less per call center employee than India.  A penny saved is a penny earned.  LOL

    2. I regularly attend meetings and trainings in downtown indianapolis where one of the largest att call centers is located. (I am not doubting they have them overseas, I speak to them all the time) But they aren’t moving everything, the call center was going to become a tmobile call center as well if the merger was approved.

  8. I have at&t and didn’t want the merger to happen. I feel bad about those losing jobs but if the merger happened more than 3000 jobs would have been lost. I would not have been feasible to keep all employees. I’d guess more like 6000 to 7000 easy would have been unemployed. Never trust at&t or any company doing a merger always means high job losses

  9. i would put money that even if the merger went through, this layoff would have happened.  at&T wants the spectrum, not the employees

  10. At&t would of had to do the same i extended my contract after the merge was denied would not of if it happened i would be with sprint even if their speeds are crap in my area lol

  11. Stay classy AT&T!

  12. I approve Jim’s message!

  13. #ShutUpJimCicconoi

  14. why are you guys fighting over each other. the people should be complaining is those people that work hard now lost their jobs. this is so b.s. of T-Mobile

  15. ok. the way att/verizon conduct their business probably has something to do with this “misfortune”

  16. and att getting approval for the merger still would have been worse than these layoffs

  17. Curious, I wonder who the Junior Executive Vice President of External and Legislative Affairs is?

  18. So what’s Verizon’s excuse?  They just laid off a couple thousand from call centers. Can they blame this on the cancelled merger?

  19. Wow, at&t…good luck with future ventures requiring FCC approval…

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