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By Jan Kramer, Stefan Seifert

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Extra resources for Communications Regulation in the Age of Digital Convergence: Legal and Economic Perspectives

Sample text

This evaluation may thus lead to the violation of business confidentiality by the state: Although the state and business owner acknowledge the confidentiality of the information, due to overriding motives, the agency nevertheless reveals the information to the third party. c) Additional Rights to State Information However, the Freedom of Information Laws are not the only grounds upon which a party may rest its claim to state information.  This also solves the problem of the agency having to identify the business information in the first place.

Let us now turn to the end users.  Cable TV companies charge monthly fees for broadcast baskets and there exist payment‐on‐demand services.  Data and internet have largely been subjected to bandwidth pricing on a monthly basis, complemented by advertising or capacity based usage pricing. There is a high willingness to pay for access. Essentially the willingness to pay in the internet is for bandwidth. The convergence is associated with large investments: Some of those required for NGN maybe questionable, but there are large investments out there.

Those are competition policy or net neutrality regulation. Competition policy is the fallback, because in network industries at least some market power is typically present. We cannot exclude competition policy. The policy maker cannot say I don’t do anything. Net neutrality violations fall squarely in the realm of competition policy, where they may or may not count as violations. They are discriminations of some kind, such as quality discrimination or price discrimination, and in some cases the networks are going to decline service to someone.

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