Last year, we marveled at the more than 250 Charter employees who took the time to fill out our online nomination form and sing the praises of this cable MSO. But it looks like that was a fluke. We feel obligated to report that we didn’t get 250 nominations this year. We got 500! Yes, the “love” from Charter’s employees seems to have roughly doubled in a year’s time, and there’s plenty of good reason for that. For one thing, Charter continues to offer some of the most competitive pay and benefits in cable, despite the bad economy and internal financial challenges. This is a company that knows how to treat people. And it’s the reason so many jump at the chance to tell us so each year. Workers praise everything from its pay scale to its 401K to its open-door policy with senior execs to its encouragement of volunteerism and community service. But you know, sometimes it’s just the little things. “It may sound silly, but I love the filtered water and ice machine,” remarked one CSR. “Recently they replaced some of the junk food vending machines with healthy options, and there is a great variety of vending machines.” So listen up, CEOs: Even the smallest of gestures can make a big difference. And that’s an important lesson for all of us.

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In the Courts

The Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit denied China Telecom ’s emergency motion to halt an FCC order that it stop all operations in the U.S. by Jan. 3. The court said the company failed to satisfy the

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