Comcast has agreed to pay $16.7 million and provide services worth another $33.3 million to end an 11-year-old class action lawsuit in which Philadelphia residents alleged that the company violated federal antitrust law.
Filed on December 8, 2003, the suit claimed that large cable companies such as Comcast “divided and allocated markets through a series of agreements ‘swapping’ customers and ‘clustering’ cable systems in geographic areas. Such conduct has allowed a cable company, including Defendant, in a particular ‘cluster’ to acquire or maintain monopoly power, raise prices, engage in anticompetitive conduct, and limit choice for cable consumers to effectively the only game in town—the cable services of the ‘cluster’ monopoly cable company.”
The case went through many twists and turns over the years, including a Supreme Court ruling in favor of Comcast in March 2013. The plaintiffs, who had been seeking $875 million, kept the suit going by moving to re-certify a narrower class of alleged victims. Comcast still denies the allegations but agreed to a proposed settlement.
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