The Federal Communications Commission will be assembling two separate teams to deal with two mergers: AT&T-DirecTV and Comcast-Time Warner.
The Comcast-Time Warner deal is a $45 billion dollar agreement, whereas the AT&T-DirecTV deal comes out to $49 billion.
According to reports, the teams are made up of former United States Department of Defense officials, including former antitrust division attorney Hillary Burchuk. Burchuk became part of the FCC in 2011.
Burchuk's team will review the proposed merger of Comcast and Time Warner. Her team will also review the related deal between Comcast and Charter Communications, a cable, telephone and Internet services provider.
Jamillia Ferris, another former government antitrust attorney, will be reviewing the deal between AT&T and DirecTV. Before joining the FCC, Ferris was a lawyer at the firm, Hunton & Williams LLP.
Reports note that FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler had made the announcement of the review process, in which the teams will investigate whether or not the companies won't violate antitrust rules or other laws in the U.S.
It is expected that the reviews will take a lot of time, meaning the mergers won't likely take place for a while. Since the FCC has faced such controversy from advocacy groups, the agency will also likely be very careful in their analysis of these large coporations.
Investors may worry as well as consumers and online streaming and other services. Consumers certainly won't be happy with higher prices and worse service from the companies.
Ferris, who reportedly gave an interview in May before she joined the FCC review team, said many factors will be considered.
"Horizontal competition won't be the only way they look at market dynamics and the competitive effects of the transaction," Ferris commented. "For example, you can expect that they will examine whether the combined company will have enhanced buying power that results in less or lower quality output when negotiating with content providers."
She added that the Department of Justice will investigate to see if the deal would also harm other companies trying to access content.
The FCC's general counsel, Jonathan Sallet, will chair a steering committee that will supervise both of the mergers. Members of the committee include Media Bureau Chief William Lake, International Bureau Chief Mindel de la Torre, Wireline Competition Bureau Chief Julie Veach, and Wireless Telecommunications Bureau Chief Roger Sherman.