This past week the Western District of Oklahoma certified a class of consumers who had alleged Cox Enterprises violated U.S. antitrust law by requiring premium cable subscribers to rent set-top-boxes. The case was originally filed in 2009 and in 2011 the court denied certification of a nationwide class.
Plaintiffs’ counsel then filed multiple nearly identical actions across the country asserting claims for a narrower geographic region.
The case was again consolidated in Oklahoma and the parties agreed to proceed first with the case involving the Oklahoma City geographic market. After conducting a rigorous analysis of the Rule 23 elements for class certification, the Court rejected the defendants’ arguments and found that each element of the plaintiffs’ case could be proven by common evidence.
This case is similar to others pending around the country against cable providers including a case in New Jersey that is pending against Cablevision, a company that provides cable services to the New York metropolitan area.