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By Thomas M. Lenard (auth.), Jeffrey A. Eisenach, Thomas M. Lenard (eds.)

Do the antitrust legislation have a spot within the electronic economic system or are they out of date? that's the query raised by way of the government's criminal motion opposed to Microsoft, and it's the query this quantity is designed to reply to.
America's antitrust legislation have been born out of the economic Revolution. competitors of the antitrust legislation argue that no matter what advantage the antitrust legislation could have had long ago they've got no position in a electronic economic climate. swift innovation makes the buildup of industry strength virtually very unlikely. Markets switch too speedy for antitrust activities to take care of. And antitrust treatments are necessarily regulatory and accordingly threaten to `regulate business'.
a distinct view - and, quite often, the view provided during this quantity - is that antitrust legislations can and does have a big and confident position to play within the electronic financial system. The software program company is new, it's complicated, and it truly is speedily relocating. research of marketplace definition, contestibility and power pageant, the function of innovation, community externalities, rate constructions and advertising and marketing channels current demanding situations for teachers, policymakers and judges alike. comparing client damage is complicated. Distinguishing among unlawful behavior and brutal - yet valid - festival is frequently tricky.
Is antitrust research as much as the problem? This quantity means that antitrust research `still works'. In stark distinction to the political rhetoric that has surrounded a lot of the talk over the Microsoft case, the articles awarded the following recommend neither that Microsoft is inherently undesirable, nor that it merits a de facto exemption from the antitrust legislation. as a substitute, they give insights - for policymakers, courts, practitioners, professors and scholars of antitrust coverage far and wide - on how antitrust research should be utilized to the company of constructing and advertising and marketing machine software.

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Read Online or Download Competition, Innovation and the Microsoft Monopoly: Antitrust in the Digital Marketplace: Proceedings of a conference held by The Progress & Freedom Foundation in Washigton, DC February 5, 1998 PDF

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Extra info for Competition, Innovation and the Microsoft Monopoly: Antitrust in the Digital Marketplace: Proceedings of a conference held by The Progress & Freedom Foundation in Washigton, DC February 5, 1998

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Antitrust in the Digital Age 23 While lock-in effects and single finn dominance of particular sectors certainly render a market less than competitive, and consequently has costs in tenns of consumer welfare, it also produces an important positive effect. When one finn dominates the market for a product which serves as a platfonn - a product to which other software developers will write their programs - that finn creates a de facto standard, a unifonn platfonn. Software developers thus are not faced with the cost, in tenns of time and resources, to develop applications that run across a variety of platfonns.

In any event, software development has largely been an English-language activity to date. In none of the software merger cases reported below was geographic market definition an important factor. We note, however, Antitrust in Software Markets 39 "Horizontal Merger Guidelines" (the Guidelines) explain how the agencies define relevant markets for the purpose of evaluating horizontal mergers. We follow the Guidelines here, indicating how their market-definition procedures apply to computer software markets.

To the extent that users wish to share files, the greater the number of users on a given network, the greater will be the benefits of belonging to that network. This positive feedback is what is known as a network effect. It is important to recognize that network effects can arise even in the absence of any communications network. 6 For example, A may be the operating system needed to make word processing program B work. Positive feedback arises when an increase in the number of users who adopt component A leads to an increase in the benefits that consumers can enjoy from the purchase of component B.

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