A History of Cronyism and Capture in the Information Technology Sector

66 Pages Posted: 2 Jul 2013 Last revised: 18 Sep 2014

See all articles by Adam D. Thierer

Adam D. Thierer

R Street Institute

Brent Skorup

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: July 1, 2013


This paper documents the evolution of government-granted privileges, or "cronyism," in the information and communications technology marketplace and in the media-producing sectors.

It also shows that cronyism is slowly creeping into new high-technology sectors. This influence could dull entrepreneurialism and competition in this highly innovative sector since time and resources spent on influencing politicians and capturing regulators cannot be spent competing and innovating in the marketplace.

Cronyism will also negatively impact consumer welfare by denying consumers more and better products and services. Additionally, consumers might end up paying higher prices or higher taxes due to government privileges for industry.

Finally, this paper offers strategies for stalling and diminishing the cronyism already taking root in the high-tech sector.

Keywords: cronyism, tech, high-tech, info-tech, information, technology, regulation, subsidies, transfer, market, subsidy, incentives, telecom, media, broadcasting, broadcast, cable, satellite, TV, television, rents, privilege, tax break, taxation, lobby, lobbyists, economics, competitive, anticompetitive

JEL Classification: H25, K23, L5, N4, N7, O1, O3

Suggested Citation

Thierer, Adam D. and Skorup, Brent, A History of Cronyism and Capture in the Information Technology Sector (July 1, 2013). Journal of Technology Law & Policy, Vol. 18, 2013, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2288082 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2288082

Adam D. Thierer (Contact Author)

R Street Institute ( email )

1050 17th Street Northwest
Washington, DC 20036
United States

Brent Skorup

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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