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If Armstrong just gave out a free pass to AOL and the other ISP's to use the same cable pipes that @Home has exclusive rights to it would be a major sea change.

What Armstrong has said all along is that the high speed access would be through ATHM. He has said that AOL would have access through the telephony provided by Cable, but not neccesarily through the high speed network, unless it was piggy backed on @Home's network.

Further if Armstong does give AOL a free ride on the high speed pipe, there will be more investor lawsuits than there are fish in the sea.

In other words it is not very likely. Why would ATHM and its cable affiliates build and design a high speed network and then just give it away? There is no federal or local regulation in effect requiring operators of cable systems to do so, and the need for such regulation is very unlikely with Broadband Cable access amounting to about one percent of the online population.

Even if regulators get new laws, or even if Armstorng capitulates on earlier statements, AOL will have to compete with ATHM for content, which I think ATHM will have the edge on with the Excite partnership. My mom has AOL. She has it because it was easy to get. Its not very user friendly with all that pop up advertising.

I have the feeling that the article in the referenced link was a bit too paraphrased and under researched. At least that is what I am thinking. I noted the the link frfom the article to the referenced speech was not working either.

Good Luck,
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