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BREAKING: AT&T Wins in Court to Merge With Time Warner

AT&T has won in court against the DOJ to proceed with its big Time Warner merger.

Per The Wall Street Journal:

U.S. District Judge Richard Leon announced his decision in a packed courtroom, ruling that antitrust enforcers at the Justice Department had not proven their case against the merger…

The acquisition means AT&T will be the nation’s top pay-TV distributor.

The DOJ filed a lawsuit to stop the deal back in November. CNN’s Hadas Gold today broke down the broader implications of this case:

It is about tectonic shifts in the media and technology industries. It’s about how and where we consume content and it’s about the data that companies like Netflix, Facebook and Amazon collect on viewing habits and consumer behavior that gives them a leg up over companies like Time Warner and AT&T.

The trial is also a landmark for the entire industry, as companies like Disney, Fox and Comcast wait to see how the judge rules before moving ahead with their own mega deals. If AT&T and Time Warner win, it will likely be full steam ahead. But if the ruling falls in the Justice Department’s favor, a new era of government scrutiny over these types of mergers could freeze further consolidation in the industry.

[image via screengrab]

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Follow Josh Feldman on Twitter: @feldmaniac