The reason why Trump is demanding that Americans boycott AT&T is ridiculous

The reason why Trump is demanding that Americans boycott AT&T is ridiculous
President Donald Trump used his Twitter account (via CNBC) today to call for a boycott of the nation's second largest carrier, AT&T. Did the wireless provider overcharge the White House for unlimited data? Was the president's account throttled preventing him from sending an important tweet? No, the reason for the boycott has nothing to do with the carrier's performance. It has to do with the fact that AT&T's purchase of Time Warner left it with control of CNN.

In a tweet, the president wrote that if enough people stopped using or subscribing to AT&T, it would force the company to change the way CNN covers Trump. It certainly is not normal behavior for a U.S. president to call for a large American company to be boycotted because he doesn't like the way he is portrayed in the media. Most U.S. presidents, Democrats, and Republicans alike, simply put up with the way they are covered by the press.

In late October 2016, just weeks before the election, AT&T announced that it would buy Time Warner for $85.4 billion. Then-candidate Trump said that if he were elected president, he would block the deal because "It's too much concentration of power in the hands of too few." But what really stuck in his craw was the fact that CNN was involved in the transaction.  As we pointed out at the time, "with CNN's pro-Clinton coverage of the election, this seems more like Trump's usual attempt to get revenge on anyone that doesn't treat the thin-skinned billionaire with the deference Trump believes he is due."

Trump wants Americans to boycott AT&T because he is not happy with CNN's coverage of his presidency


On June 14th of last year, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon made a ruling that allowed the merger to proceed. Originally, the Justice Department said it would not appeal the decision. But nearly a month after the merger closed, the regulatory agency attempted to block the transaction. That alone is quite unusual, and a report published earlier this year revealed that the president wanted to personally get involved in the Justice Department's review and block the deal. However, Trump's own staff intervened to prevent that from happening and the deal was allowed to remain closed.

In his tweet, Trump wrote, "I believe that if people stopped using or subscribing to @ATT, they would be forced to make big changes at @CNN, which is dying in the ratings anyway. It is so unfair with such bad, Fake News! Why wouldn’t they act. When the World watches @CNN, it gets a false picture of USA. Sad!" Democrats in the House are trying to investigate whether Trump told his former economic advisor Gary Cohn to have the AT&T-Time Warner deal blocked. A request made to the White House for related documents back in April was denied.


This isn't the first time that Trump has called for consumers to boycott a U.S. tech firm. In February 2016, candidate Trump called for consumers to boycott Apple for failing to allow the FBI to unlock the iPhone 5c belonging to San Bernardino shooter Syed Farooq. At the time, Trump tweeted "Boycott all Apple products until such time as Apple gives cellphone info to authorities regarding radical Islamic terrorist couple from Cal(ifornia)." And in 2015, after T-Mobile CEO John Legere had a Twitter battle against the future president, Trump insulted T-Mobile's service and said that he didn't want the carrier offering its wireless service in any of his buildings. Despite this tirade, it would appear that the president is in favor of the T-Mobile-Sprint merger. This seems clear considering that Trump's handpicked FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai, has recommended that the $26.5 billion deal get approved. Pai usually does whatever he is asked to do by the president, such as removing the Obama-era net neutrality rules from the books.

Meanwhile, neither AT&T or CNN have commented on the president's tweet.

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28 Comments

1. Subie

Posts: 2361; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

I don't know why, but for some reason I NOW want to sign up with AT&T! Even though they're not an option here in Canada...

2. Foxgabanna

Posts: 596; Member since: Sep 11, 2016

Lol people are probably going to sign up for ATT and make them overpass Verizon.

3. D34ever

Posts: 227; Member since: Jul 14, 2018

The Man Child in Chief strikes again. Man, I really love this clown.

26. jojon

Posts: 433; Member since: Feb 11, 2014

,,,Trump is the man, you need to get out more.

4. santootree

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 03, 2019

yipikae mf, now he gave free advertising for ATT , now whos dumb n dumber ?

5. veerhardik

Posts: 10; Member since: Feb 23, 2019

President is right!

8. AustinPaul

Posts: 152; Member since: Dec 13, 2011

Funny. I feel even better having left them over a year and a half ago.

11. AverageGadgetFeind

Posts: 5; Member since: Dec 19, 2017

@Alan Friedman ... NO President has EVER had the treatment from media that Trump has received... so your whole theory is straight Dog Fecal Matter

18. Macready

Posts: 1821; Member since: Dec 08, 2014

Stop crying over the treatment of a man that deserves every bit of his own medicine. The conman in chief sought the attention of the media with lies, half truths and conspiracies (birtherism et al.) to propel himself into the spotlights of the White House and now whines like a baby for being stuck with extra scrutiny, scepticism, criticism and fact checking because of it... by the same outlets he conned before. Oh, the irony. David Dennison, is that you?

24. tedkord

Posts: 17355; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

You mean no other President has had the truth about him reported? Of course, no other president has been as big a criminal, either.

12. cncrim

Posts: 1588; Member since: Aug 15, 2011

ATT just got free advertise, alot of people probably will sign up ATT now.

13. umaru-chan

Posts: 358; Member since: Apr 27, 2017

Lol, what a baby.

17. mootu

Posts: 1517; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

Yup, Tangerine Toddler.

16. BigVanVader

Posts: 51; Member since: Jan 01, 2016

Fake news

19. true1984

Posts: 865; Member since: May 23, 2012

This isn't news or newsworthy. This is political commentary

20. inFla

Posts: 110; Member since: Aug 17, 2018

Is phone arena out of phone stories and now into politics?

21. newbey123

Posts: 701; Member since: Mar 19, 2012

Love my AT&T service even more now!! Long live AT&T!!

22. darkkjedii

Posts: 31027; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I just can't wait for him to eat one McDonalds Cheese(berder) too many. POS!

27. JRPG_Guy

Posts: 144; Member since: Jan 13, 2019

Is this guy in need of meds

28. rossy

Posts: 41; Member since: Aug 23, 2013

Click bait from the king of click baits. Got me.

29. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

I didn't think Phone Arena would go all "Orange Man Bad" on my tech news feed. This is pretty disappointing.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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