The Monopolies that No One Is Talking About

Coverage Type: analysis
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Leaving aside the discussion for a minute on whether tech platforms like Google and Amazon actually might meet the definition of a monopoly under our nation’s antitrust laws (a precise and economically rigorous definition usually left to the Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, or the federal (and sometimes state) court system), we seem to have forgotten about an important part of the digital ecosystem and whether it has a monopoly problem. It’s the one that’s hiding in plain sight and the evidence is in your mailbox (or inbox) every month when you get your cable bill.

Why does is matter if cable internet service providers have market power? When companies monopolize they may hurt consumers because they no longer have the incentives to compete on price or service, with the unsurprising result that even while profits for companies increase consumer satisfaction plummets and prices continue to rise.


Most wired ISPs are regional monopolies just like the electric company and the water companies.
This is caused by exactly the same physical realities. Water/electric/phone were all once utilities.
Today's homes may not be connected to the area telephone grid or switched phone lines. POTS.
The only option for most in Newark Arkansas and for the schools here is at&t.

This common fact is why the FCC is wanting to count wireless broadband as section 706 "advanced telecommunications" even though this unreliable and insecure radio communication is almost as insecure as walkie-talkies.

This talking point reinforcement will help Interim Chairman Pai in an attempt get rid of Title II. This should still never happen.

CurtisNeeley on September 2, 2017 - 7:43pm.


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