Wednesday, October 10, 2012

How to Maintain a Competitive Internet

West, Darrell M., and Elizabeth Valentini. "How to Maintain a Competitive Internet." Paper released in conjunction with the Fostering Internet Competition Conference, Brookings Institution, Washington, D.C., October 10, 2012.

From the paper: "To protect these virtues, a number of academic experts and business leaders have concluded that the government should be cautious about applying competition law to the Internet market.  They argue we should have a “hands-off” competition policy given the rapidly changing nature of digital technology, the complexity of networked industries, the slow pace of government decision-making, the lack of substantive knowledge on the part of regulators, and the globalization of service delivery. 

In this paper, we argue that robust competition policy, including the application of law and enforcement, are vital to ensure the continuing benefits of Internet communications and commerce. Competition is good for consumers, and we need to protect against threats to open competition in Internet markets in order to maintain its beneficial features.  It is important to have antitrust enforcement and fair, transparent, and non-discriminatory market behavior to gain the full benefits of the Internet. We need public policies that promote consumer choice and encourage innovation without stifling competition." Read more