A long time ago, in a world that made slightly more sense than this one does today, As a result of an anti-trust suit, Bell Telephone was ordered split into a separate company from AT&T, and then in another anti-trust suit, Bell Telephone was ordered broken up into several “baby bells”.

Now, years later, we are seeing the slow formation of a behemoth even larger than the original monster as various telecomunications companies merge and the smaller ones are bought outright.

The thing is, if these things would take even a tenth of resources that they dedicate to swallowing up the competition and spend it on improving service, they’d grow a lot faster and generate a heck of a lot less suspicion. As it is, I for one am going to keep my eyes open.

AT&T, BellSouth announce 67 billion dollar merger (AFP)
NEW YORK (AFP) – US telecommunications giant AT&T Inc., and BellSouth Corporation announced a giant 67 billion dollar merger deal.

The deal, if approved by US regulators and the companies’ shareholders, would create the country’s largest telecommunications group by market capitalization, overshadowing rival Verizon Communications.

“This merger is a logical next step that creates substantial value for customers and stockholders of both AT&T and BellSouth,” AT&T chairman and chief executive Edward Whitacre Jr., said in a statement.

The companies said in a joint statement that Whitacre would become the chairman and CEO of the newly-merged company.

The merger will also streamline the operations of Cingular Wireless, which is jointly owned by both companies.

AT&T and BellSouth said that their tie-up would promote competition and that it would be good for employees and shareholders.

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