FCC stops 'shot clock' on Comcast-TWC review to consider more comments

The FCC will stop the "shot clock" on its 180-day review of the proposed merger between Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA) and Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC), and will give critics of the deal more time to voice dissension.

The announcement comes after Comcast filed a massive brief of nearly 850 pages to the Federal Communications Commission late last month, blasting critics of the deal. Dish Network (NASDAQ: DISH) asked the FCC to reopen the commentary window so that responses to Comcast's new claims could be rendered.

The FCC agreed with the request, noting that because Comcast interjected more information into the proceedings, "additional time is needed to evaluate it." Those in opposition now have until Oct. 29 to render responses.

Comcast spokesperson Sena Fitzmaurice downplayed the delay, noting that a similar stoppage occurred in 2010, when Comcast successfully fought to get its purchase of NBCUniversal approved by the FCC.

"We will work with the staff to determine the additional information the FCC is seeking (including the document production that the FCC asked us to delay filing) and will submit supplemental answers and documents quickly thereafter so that the FCC can complete its review early in 2015," Fitzmaurice said in a statement.

The FCC began the 180-day review period for the merger, also referred to as the "shot clock," back in July. 

For more:
- read this Reuters story
- read this Variety story

Related links:
FCC starts 180-day clock on Comcast-TWC merger review
Comcast says merger foes guided by self-interest, not consumer benefit
When Cohen attacks: Comcast exec lays into merger critics at commentary deadline
Comcast-TWC input period ends: 64K comments received, 65 groups urge rejection
Comcast's Cohen to regulators: 'Don't make us the next Blockbuster'

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