The Time Warner logo is seen on a monitor near a trader on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S. June 13, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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AT&T's victory over the government's attempt to block its $85 billion takeover of Time Warner underscores just how much the way people watch – and pay for – TV has changed.U.S. District Judge Richard Leon ultimately agreed with AT&T's assertion it had to grow to survive in the era of Google, Amazon and Netflix.As of this past Monday, AT&T and Verizon can prioritize their own movies and TV shows, to the likely disadvantage of rivals such as Amazon, YouTube and future startups.The judge's decision frees wireless and pay-TV giant AT&T to absorb Time Warner, which owns CNN, HBO, the Warner Bros. movie studio, "Game of Thrones," coveted sports programming and other "must-see" shows.If it's not wrapped up by then, either company could walk away, and AT&T would have to pay a $500 million breakup fee.AT&T general counsel David McAtee said the company plans to close the deal on or before June 20 .
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