Disney has a monopoly on entertainment

By Anthony Szudarski

How often do you think of Mickey Mouse when you’re watching ESPN?

If you said never, you’re probably like me and were completely unaware that according to Free Press, The Walt Disney Company owns ESPN along with ABC, Marvel Entertainment, and more than a dozen other media companies.

It was Tuesday when The Walt Disney Company bought Lucasfilm and I decided to go into super sleuth mode and find out just what Mr. Mouse had attached to his portfolio. I’m a Star Wars fan, and I just wanted to make sure that I wouldn’t be getting any Donald Duck and Goofy crossovers alongside Han Solo and Chewbacca in future movies.

Now I’d like to believe I wasn’t naïve, that I understood that Disney was a large company and made millions of dollars, but even my initial suspicions were blown away. I had no idea that Disney owned movie producing companies like Touchstone Pictures and Marvel Entertainment. These are companies that put out some of my favorite movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas and The Avengers.

It was this initial shock that made me wonder: Is it too much?

Don’t get me wrong–I love the movies that are getting released by these companies, I watch ESPN on a daily basis and I love Disney World. But at what point does a company like this have too much power?

It’s not just in media that these large companies end up dominating their market, either.

According to CBS News correspondent Lesley Stahl, the eyeglass company Luxottica “is the biggest eyeware company on earth.” With contracts with companies like Prada and Chanel and brands like Oakley and Ray-Ban, Luxottica is rolling in dough and buying up even more brandnames.

I’m not a paranoid guy; I don’t think that corporations are out to get me and control what I spend my money on. But after just light research into these companies, I can’t help but picture a world depicted in the movie Demolition Man with Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipes. Pretty soon all restaurants will be Taco Bells.

Well, probably not Taco Bell, but you can see where I’m going with this.

All movies will be Disney movies, all sunglasses will be Luxottica sunglasses and no one will have a choice in the matter.

Do I think that we should all boycott these movies and other goods? Hell no! I’m sorry, but when The Avengers sequel comes out I’m going to be at the theater waiting in line, and when I have kids of my own I’m going to bring them to Disney World. But the next time I watch ABC News, you can count on me double-checking their facts and stories to make sure I’m getting the whole truth.

I can tell you that if you search for a story about any accidents at any Disney-owned park on the ABC News website you may not find one easily, as happened to me. And that’s the beauty of owning the news.