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Are ‘Closed Systems’ an Antitrust Problem?

Competition Policy International, Vol. 7, No. 1, Spring 2011

23 Pages Posted: 23 May 2011  

Hanno F. Kaiser

Latham & Watkins LLP; University of California, Berkeley - School of Law

Date Written: March 10, 2011

Abstract

Closed computer systems have come under attack as harmful to freedom, innovation, and competition. Open computer systems, in contrast, are said to promote such values. This article assesses the specific claim that closed systems, compared to open systems, are inherently anticompetitive. It concludes that competition policy arguments against closed systems are at best inconclusive and that closed systems should not be put in an antitrust suspect class.

Keywords: antitrust, competition law, systems competition, monopolization, aftermarkets, innovation, open systems, closed systems, vertical integration

JEL Classification: L40, L41

Suggested Citation

Kaiser, Hanno F., Are ‘Closed Systems’ an Antitrust Problem? (March 10, 2011). Competition Policy International, Vol. 7, No. 1, Spring 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1844944

Hanno F. Kaiser (Contact Author)

Latham & Watkins LLP ( email )

505 Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94111
United States

University of California, Berkeley - School of Law

215 Boalt Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720-7200
United States

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