Our Topsy-Turvy Tech World

by on December 22, 2009 · 9 comments

Gee, if only the technology sector weren’t so gosh-darn static and slow-to-change, maybe we wouldn’t need government to keep tinkering with the market to make sure big, bad incumbents didn’t reign on high, oppressing us with their monopolistic control of our cyber-lives. But since the Big just keep getting bigger and “network effects” make it impossible for new competitors to get in the game, it’s a good thing we have so many Federal agencies looking out for us poor consumers (FCC, FTC, DOJ, NTIA, etc.) with antitrust interventions, common carriage mandates and 1000 other regulatory “tweaks”—not to mention all those oh-so-tech-savvy state legislators and attorneys general, always eager to leap into action!  “Fire, ready, aim, boys!

I mean after all, it’s only a matter of time before Time Warner/AOL uses their combined $100 billion might as “gatekeepers” to digitally enslave us all, right?  Oh, wait…

Uh, yeah, well never mind… As Adam and I have noted:

In the high-tech sector more than any other, disruptive innovation makes it difficult for even the most successful companies to stay on top forever. Competitive entry—or even the threat of new entry—provides a powerful check on the power of so-called “gatekeepers,” but even more important is the prospect that today’s leaders will be tomorrow’s laggards: There’s little reason to think Google (search and advertising), Apple (smart phones and music) and Facebook (social networking) won’t someday find themselves playing catch-up, just as IBM (computers), Microsoft (desktop software and search), Friendster and MySpace (social networking), and Yahoo! and AOL (web portals) have had to do.

  • smithjame

    But since the Big just keep getting bigger and make it impossible for new
    competitors to get in the game, it’s a good thing we have so many Federal
    agencies looking out for us poor consumers.
    studio flats to rent in london

  • http://enigmafoundry.wordpress.com eee_eff

    This is a very telling post. Here, there is much criticism of government regulation[ e.g.: (FCC, FTC, DOJ, NTIA, etc.) with antitrust interventions, common carriage mandates,"] that impact large corporations, but no criticism at all of government regulation which impinges on personal liberty, for example the DMCA. There is also no mention at all of the threatened ACTA, probably one of the greatest threats to personal liberty since the Alien and Sedition Acts.

    Why is that? My work theory is that tlf-libertarianism is a mask for corporate power advocates, who consistently only voice concerns about laws or regulations which would limit the power of Microsoft or big telco's, while remaining silent about the destruction of personal liberty which those same corporations are presently effecting.

  • adultsocialnet

    I suprised GMO, genetically modified crops, were not mentioned here. There are a lot of people in government big pharma, and big agriculture that don't want the public to know the truth about GMO and potential horizontal gene transfer within other living kingdoms. Only time will tell.

  • adultsocialnet
  • adultsocialnet

    It is hard to imagin something like facebook having to 'catch up' , I guess we'll just have to wait and see..

  • http://srynas.blogspot.com/ Steve R.

    @ eee_eff, Quite true. Concerning Congresswoman, CALM Thyself! LA Times Eschews Eshoo Nanny State Bill to Regulate Ad Volume. I wrote: “Why do there seem to be only posts raising the specter of the Nanny State when the government seeks to “protect” its citizens but there are no posts exposing corporate appeals to the Nanny State (big government) for “protection”?”

  • caroljns8

    Apple is developing high end products which
    includes its Mac air book which is very slim
    and iphone which is ruling in the smart-phone
    sector.
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  • MikeRT

    Well, recently I had to learn the hard way why the current regulations, especially franchise laws, screw customers royally. The subcontractors for Verizon who laid the FiOS infrastructure in our neighborhood committed fraud against Verizon with my yard; they dug and lined the hole for the lines to be brought across the street from the hub, but did not actually do any of THAT work.

    So now, thanks to our wonderfully free, competitive market (thank you, public interest groups who can't seem to call for things like a federal law to liquidate all local and state telecom restrictions on who can deploy services!) I have to either choose Comcast or wait God only knows how long for FiOS.

    Also… DSL is not available anymore either because Verizon dropped it so it wouldn't compete with FiOS…

  • MikeRT

    Well, recently I had to learn the hard way why the current regulations, especially franchise laws, screw customers royally. The subcontractors for Verizon who laid the FiOS infrastructure in our neighborhood committed fraud against Verizon with my yard; they dug and lined the hole for the lines to be brought across the street from the hub, but did not actually do any of THAT work.

    So now, thanks to our wonderfully free, competitive market (thank you, public interest groups who can't seem to call for things like a federal law to liquidate all local and state telecom restrictions on who can deploy services!) I have to either choose Comcast or wait God only knows how long for FiOS.

    Also… DSL is not available anymore either because Verizon dropped it so it wouldn't compete with FiOS…

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