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Network Neutrality and Industry Structure

Phoenix Center Policy Paper No. 24

22 Pages Posted: 8 May 2006  

George S. Ford

Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies

Thomas Koutsky

Connected Nation Inc.

Lawrence J. Spiwak

Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 2006

Abstract

One of the most heated debates in the current efforts to re-write the Communications Act has been whether the federal government should impose "Network Neutrality" requirements on broadband service providers. While we argue neither for nor against the need for Network Neutrality legislation in this POLICY PAPER, our analysis shows that policymakers should avoid Network Neutrality mandates that have the intent or effect of "commoditizing" broadband access services since such a policy approach is likely to deter facilities-based competition, reduce the expansion and deployment of advanced communications networks, and increase prices. Given the economic characteristics of local communications networks, policies that promote commoditization of broadband access could lead to the monopoly provision of advanced broadband services in many markets. This outcome would harm consumers substantially.

Keywords: Network Neutrality, Commoditization, Entry, Broadband

JEL Classification: K23, K29, L96, L98, L99, O33, O38

Suggested Citation

Ford, George S. and Koutsky, Thomas and Spiwak, Lawrence J., Network Neutrality and Industry Structure (April 2006). Phoenix Center Policy Paper No. 24. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=899628 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.899628

George S. Ford

Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies ( email )

5335 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Suite 440
Washington, DC 20015
United States

Thomas M. Koutsky

Connected Nation Inc. ( email )

1020 College St
Bowling Green, KY 42101
United States

Lawrence J. Spiwak (Contact Author)

Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies ( email )

5335 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Suite 440
Washington, DC 20015
United States
202-274-0235 (Phone)
202-318-4909 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.phoenix-center.org

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