One of the arguments for permitting monopolies is that they are "efficient." That's the logic under which Universal was allowed to acquire Comcast and NBC - the "vertical integration" would make all three companies better and we'd all reap the benefit.

1/

It turns out that there are DISeconomies of scale, what Brandeis called "the curse of bigness" and really, the Universal-NBC-Comcast octopus is a poster child for that curse.

https://t.co/1pLFcUjhV7

2/
Comcast has just informed its subscribers that they are at risk of losing access to "Bravo, CNBC, E!, Golf Channel, MSNBC, Olympic Channel, Oxygen, Syfy, Telemundo, Universal Kids, NBC Universo, USA Network and NBC Sports Network."

https://t.co/UU9un9Lm1t

3/
That is, Comcast has warned its customers that Comcast might not license its channels to Comcast anymore.

This is a "carriage dispute" - a dispute over how much the cable operator will pay the broadcaster. It's a common dispute to have.

4/
But in this case, Comcast's dispute is over the accounting fiction of how much one division of a vertical monopolist will nominally charge another to access its products.

5/
Comcast's notice was triggered by a statutory duty to inform subscribers when a deal is set to expire with no new deal in place, and obviously Comcast can strike that deal with itself at the stroke of a pen.

6/
But it's not clear why it hasn't done so already, sparing the company the baffling humiliation of sending out these notices. Perhaps it's because the contours of the deal may affect its licensing rates to rivals like ATT-Time Warner.

7/
In other words, permitting Universal to buy both a cable operator and a zillion cable channels has put it in the position where to benefit one division, it may have to do serious harm to another.

Tell me again how monopolies are efficient?

eof/

More from Cory Doctorow #BLM

Today's Twitter threads (a Twitter thread).

Inside: Criti-Hype; Right to Repair is back for 2021; The free market and rent-seeking; and more!

Archived at: https://t.co/pXnzoWKJn2

#Pluralistic

1/


Criti-Hype: Tech bros will settle for "evil genius."

https://t.co/OyiM1vUS8Y

2/


Right to Repair is back for 2021: Will Apple sabotage this one too?

https://t.co/3gcyEZQWfk

3/


The free market and rent-seeking: Unauthorized bread and poor doors.

https://t.co/7Ob6AdmkDz

4/


#10yrsago Diane Duane’s crowdfunded publishing experiment finally concludes https://t.co/qsRnZxiL8b

#10yrsago Inside Sukey, the anti-kettling mobile app https://t.co/puGNKw5XgF

5/
Today's Twitter threads (a Twitter thread).

Inside: Stop saying "it's not censorship if it's not the government"; Trump's swamp gators find corporate refuge; and more!

Archived at: https://t.co/7JMcAbaULj

#Pluralistic

1/


Monday night, I'll be helping William Gibson launch the paperback edition of his novel AGENCY at a Strand Bookstore videoconference. Come say hi!

https://t.co/k3fvBdqOK0

2/


Stop saying "it's not censorship if it's not the government": I didn't expect the Spanish Inquisition.

https://t.co/7I0MpCTez5

3/


Trump's swamp gators find corporate refuge: The Swamped project.

https://t.co/MUJyIOr2iw

4/


#15yrsago A-Hole bill would make a secret technology into the law of the land https://t.co/57bJaM1Byr

#15yrsago Hollywood’s MP loses the election — hit the road, Sam! https://t.co/12ssYpV46B

#15yrsago How William Gibson discovered science fiction https://t.co/MYR0go37nW

5/
Today's Twitter threads (a Twitter thread).

Inside: Privacy Without Monopoly; Broad Band; $50T moved from America's 90% to the 1%; and more!

Archived at: https://t.co/QgK8ZMRKp7

#Pluralistic

1/


This weekend, I'm participating in Boskone 58, Boston's annual sf convention.

https://t.co/2LfFssVcZQ

Tonight, on a panel called "Tech Innovation? Does Silicon Valley Have A Mind-Control Ray, Or a Monopoly?" at 530PM Pacific.

2/


Privacy Without Monopoly: A new EFF white paper, co-authored with Bennett Cyphers.

https://t.co/TVzDXt6bz6

3/


Broad Band: Claire L Evans's magesterial history of women in computing.

https://t.co/Lwrej6zVYd

4/


$50T moved from America's 90% to the 1%: The hereditary meritocracy is in crisis.

https://t.co/TquaxOmPi8

5/

More from Economy

I really think people have a very short-sighted view of the city and its key role in decades to come for the economy of 🇨🇳. Every so often, people have a handful of misconceptions about the city's future because they lack of basics in strategy 👇


https://t.co/6wuRzXGkYZ The West propaganda seems to make people think we are cracking down on 🇭🇰 people because we no longer need them and we will inevitably suppress their rights. Every now and then, I talk with people in 🇭🇰 who think the Great Firewall will extend to 🇭🇰

🇺🇸-led liberal order is very strong to come across 🇭🇰 people and make them believe what they want. Brainwashed people don't think rationally and fall for the lies and propaganda. This guy is one among so many others I met in 🇭🇰 who told me the same thing, that the city is doomed

They couldn't be more ignorant ! Unfortunately they will end up leaving the city and missing out on incredible opportunities... But they don't know that nothing will eventually change after 2047 ? 🙃Let me explain you why

I bet even after 2047 🇭🇰 will still enjoy a high degree of autonomy and freedoms that its mainland counterpart can’t enjoy : an independent legal and financial system, English as one of the official language, an access to the West internet, its traditional medias, etc.

You May Also Like