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WASHINGTON, July 17 (Reuters) - A U.S. appeals court has denied a bid by Verizon Communications VZ.N to stay a regulatory order barring it from marketing to customers to try talk them out of switching phone services to a cable operator.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia rejected a petition by Verizon asking the court to put the order on hold while it considers Verizon’s challenge to the June 20 decision by the Federal Communications Commission, according to a July 16 decision posted on the court’s website.
However, the court put the case on a fast-track schedule, instructing both sides to submit legal briefs by Sept. 22.
“We are pleased the court granted an expedited review because the FCC order denies consumers the full benefits of competition and puts their money into the pockets of the cable incumbents each day it is in effect,” Verizon said in a statement.
At issue is an FCC decision that concluded Verizon had improperly used customer data in its marketing efforts.
The complaint focused on cases where Verizon has been notified that customers intend to switch phone service, and whether the company can subsequently undertake marketing efforts to try to keep them.
Verizon argued that upholding the cable companies’ complaint would put it at an unfair disadvantage and would deny customers full information about their options.
The FCC sided with the cable companies.
Both Verizon and telephone industry leader AT&T Inc T.N offer high-speed Internet and video services that compete with cable, while cable providers sell phone services. (Editing by Carol Bishopric and Ted Kerr)
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