Sirius and XM (Satellite Radio) merger approved

According to the Justice Department today approved the merger after more than a year of deliberation. I’ve been a Sirius subscriber since December 2006 and I think it’s great news. I suspect subscription prices will bump up at some point because of this but I’m not worried about it.

If this belongs in MPSIMS, by all means feel free to move it.

Well, good. Maybe there’ll be more stuff I want to listen to. I’m on Sirius as well.

Bah! I’m an XM subscriber because I refuse to have anything to do with anything associated with Howard Stern. Now I’ll be hearing ads for that ass.

My question is how they’ll merge the hardware and programming. I have this mental picture of music on one set of birds and all the talk on the other set of birds, but I don’t know enough about the tech involved to know if there could be compatibility without new equipment.

I don’t really recall hearing ads for Stern on other stations. Then again, I mostly listen to CBC, Iceberg, and Kidstuff.

Yeah, you’re not going to be able to get away from him. I’ve actually become a Stern fan since I got Sirius (which was Dec. 2005, not Dec. 2006 like I said in post #1).

I think the technological hurdles are easily overcome - probably no more complicated than merging mobile phone providers, and on a much smaller scale. They can switch the traffic any way they want, the challenge is doing it cheaply. I would imagine they will push some kind of firmware update to all the radios to make them all compatible with a single tranmission source (or maybe they’ll just update the Sirius radios to make them compatible with XM transmission, or vice-versa).

Whoa, folks.

The Department of Justice weighed in saying they had no objections to the merger.

The Federal Communications Commission, which still has to approve the plan, has NOT approved it and may not for a while, if at all.

And there are a couple of reasonably powerful United States Senators, including Herb Kohl, Chairman of the Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on antitrust and consumer rights, who don’t want it to happen.

Sorry to be a buzzkill but let’s not go running in circles when there still several major hoops to jump through and opponents to be defeated.

I admire your optimism, but I cannot see it not going through all the way now.

That said, don’t they dare do anything to my Ron & Fez!

Dish network has some Sirius music channels. I wonder if they will add some XM, or drop it.

Good points. I hadn’t read up on it (still haven’t), but only read the CNN blurb. I’d like to see this happen, because I think it will improve and already terrific medium. I wonder what the hold up is on this.

Step 1. FCC next. Hopefully, they get their ass in gear before my subscription re-ups in January, so I can get whatever new packages they offer. But I wouldn’t bet on the Feds moving that fast…

Unfortunately, I don’t see anything keeping the FCC from approving it, especially with this FCC.

Holy crap this is great news. I wonder if it has anything to do with Arlen Specter being on the Howard Stern show last week.

Um, the aforementioned Howard Stern, who for some reason always requires separate and special treatment from the FCC? I’d wager that if Howard Stern were not on Sirius, the merger would have gone through in a month.

Maybe so; probably also Jim Cramer’s non-stop rants, which actually drew some attention to the fact that this merger between two financially struggling, ultimately insignificant companies has dragged on months longer than the multi-billion-dollar mergers of oil giants and the like.

Why should that matter? Stern is on a network that requires specific equipment and a contract to receive. Like cable, satellite radio should not be regulated by the FCC, at least in terms of content.

Everything you say is correct. You are a very logical and rational person.

You have no future in politics.

Can anyone explain why the FCC has to approve this? I thought part of the goodness that is satellite radio is that the FCC has no say over the content.

Thanks in advance for any answers.

Because the merger isn’t a question of content, its a question of how much competition there would be in a communication related business, which the FCC also regulates.