Policies to Promote Competition often Stifle it Instead

Here’s a letter I recently sent to The Wall Street Journal:

July 20, 2009

Editor, The Wall Street Journal
200 Liberty Street
New York, NY 10281

To the Editor:

Amy Schatz’s article “New FCC Chairman’s Agenda Includes Broader Internet Access, More Transparency” (Corporate News, July 20) is most revealing. Chairman Genachowski seems to believe that forcing companies to share proprietary networks with their competitors would not reduce the incentive to build and improve such networks.

Just as puzzling, AT&T’s exclusive deal to provide service for Apple’s iPhone has come under scrutiny on anti-competitive grounds. This exclusive arrangement has encouraged competitors to come up with new and better devices of their own; thirty attempts have already hit the market. Competition is alive and well.

Chairman Genachowski is right that the Internet has been “the most successful driver of economic growth” in recent years. Why, then, pursue an agenda that would discourage investment in wired and wireless networks?

Ryan Young
Fellow in Regulatory Studies
Competitive Enterprise Institute