AT&T maintains a formidable presence in Washington. The company spent more than $15.8 million on Washington lobbying last year, and its lobbying spending in the first quarter of 2019 put it among the top two dozen companies, according to a POLITICO analysis of disclosure filings. AT&T has 17 in-house lobbyists and also retains nearly 30 outside lobbying firms, according to disclosure reports.
Readers need to know that AT&T owns:
•HBO and Cinemax, as part of Home Box Office Inc.
•TBS, truTV, TNT, Studio T, and TCM, as part of Turner Entertainment Networks
•Adult Swim and Cartoon Network, as part of the TBS, Inc. Animation, Young Adults & Kids Media (AYAKM) division
•CNN and HLN, as part of CNN News Group
•The websites Super Deluxe, Beme Inc., and CallToons
•DC Films, including all of the “Batman” movies
•Turner Broadcasting International
•Turner Sports, including the website Bleacher Report and the rights to March Madness and NBA playoffs
•The CW (50%)
•Warner Bros. Animation
•Fandango Media (30%)
•Warner Bros. Consumer Products
•Warner Bros. Digital Networks
•Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures
•Warner Bros. Pictures International
•Warner Bros. Museum
•Warner Bros. Studios, Burbank
•Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden
•Warner Bros. Studio Tours
•Warner Bros. Pictures
•Warner Animation Group
•Warner Bros. Family Entertainment
•New Line Cinema
•Turner Entertainment Co.
•Castle Rock Entertainment
•The Wolper Organization
•Blue Ribbon Content
•Warner Bros. Television
•Warner Horizon Television
•Warner Bros. Television Distribution
•Warner Bros. International Television Production
Is democracy threatened by this? What happened to antitrust regulations?
It is an age of corporatism unbridled by a government that still thinks only in terms of the printed page. How will AT&T influence our opinions not just for entertainment but for news and an understanding of reality? This is too much control over a public’s perception of the issues of daily life.