Thursday, March 12, 2009

Landing on Broadway

Anybody else find it weird that as kids we played a game encouraging hording and monopolies?

From NYT blog: Monopolies stifle free market and innovation in America.

“Now hold on there,” you might say to me. Since I wrote that many countries don’t have cable systems and the bulk of broadband is run by way of DSL through existing phone wires, how can there be competition? Aren’t those owned by monopoly phone companies?

True enough. But most big countries have devised a system to create competition by forcing the phone companies to share their lines and facilities with rival Internet providers.

Not surprisingly, the phone companies hate this idea, often called unbundling, and tend to drag their feet when it is introduced. So it requires rather diligent regulators to force the telcos to play fair. And the effect of this scheme depends a lot on details of what equipment is shared and at what prices.