informationliberation
The news you're not supposed to know...




An Introduction to Austrian Economics: Understand Economics, Understand Everything
The Century of the Self: The Untold History of Controlling the Masses Through the Manipulation of Unconscious Desires
The Disappearing Male: From Virility to Sterility

The Obama Deception: The Mask Comes Off
Operation Gladio: The Hidden History of U.S. Sponsored False Flag Terrorism in EuropeThe New American Century: The Untold History of The Project for the New American Century
(more)
Article posted Jun 13 2010, 4:14 PM Category: Economy Source: Mises Economics Blog Print

Taking Bites from the Apple

by S.M. Oliva

It’s starting to look like the Federal Trade Commission’s aborted “review” of the Google-AdMob merger was just a pretext towards the regulator’s real target, Apple Inc. The FTC said it decided not to attack Google due to Apple’s recent moves in the mobile web advertising market. And now the FTC is poised to attack Apple, reports the Wall Street Journal:
WASHINGTON--The U.S. Federal Trade Commission will investigate whether Apple Inc.’s business practices harm competition in the market for software used on mobile devices, people familiar with the situation said.

For weeks, the FTC has been engaged in negotiations with the Department of Justice over which agency would review allegations by companies that say they’re being shut-out of one of the most important emerging computing platforms.

Adobe Systems Inc. has been engaged in a public feud with Apple over its decision to ban Adobe’s Flash video technology from Apple devices. This week, Google Inc. complained Apple’s new rules on developers could bar Google and other rivals from selling ads inside iPhone and iPad applications, such as games.

[ . . . ]

Some industry representatives are coming to Apple’s defense.

“The iPhone was just introduced three years ago, and all of a sudden (Apple is) being accused of being a monopolist? To me, it’s absurd,” said Gary Shapiro, president of the Consumer Electronics Association, in an interview. “They don’t even have a dominant position in smart phones--that’s Blackberry.”

However, some antitrust enforcers say that if they wait until a tech company has cornered a market it may be too late. The technology sector has powerful “network effects” that, some say grant outsize advantages to first movers and make it particularly difficult for competitors to break in.

The FTC will have a wealth of information to mine for its probe. It recently completed a six-month investigation of Google’s $750 million acquisition of AdMob Inc., giving its lawyers knowledge of the mobile-ad market that Apple has also entered.
Two things that should stick out here: First, the fact that the DOJ and FTC have to “negotiate” to decide who gets jurisdiction confirms that antitrust is not a valid form of “law.” If there’s no way to know in advance who enforces the law -- to say nothing of what the law actually prohibits -- then what you have is a glorified form of mob rule.

Second, the Journal’s refusal to identify the “antitrust enforcers” who are calling for preemptive attacks on Apple helps explain why these same “enforcers” are trying their best to save traditional, newspaper-based journalism. The Journal acts as a one-way conduit for mid-level bureaucrats to safely level anonymous threats against private companies. There’s little risk that these taxpayer-funded lawyers will be identified or held accountable for their statements.

Now as to the merits of this story, I’d just say one thing. The FTC is not concerned about hypothetical firms that might be shut out of the market by Apple. One can’t protect that which doesn’t exist. No, the FTC is concerned because other existing companies -- i.e., Adobe and Google -- diverted a portion of their sizable resources away from developing better products and towards unproductive lobbyists (er, antitrust counsel). The FTC wants to encourage this trend, because of course many of today’s “antitrust enforcers” would like to become unproductive lobbyists themselves.





Latest Economy
- Yellen: Where No Man Has Gone Before
- Block on CNBC: Privatize the Roads
- Burgeoning Regulations Threaten Our Humanity
- How Government Forces the Poor Into Black Markets
- "America Has Ceased to Exist": Investment Guru Doug Casey on the Coming Economic Meltdown
- The Bond Trap
- Entrepreneurs Are Moral Heroes
- Faber: Fed is making rich richer, causing increase in income inequality









No Comments Posted Add Comment


Add Comment
Name
Comment

* No HTML


Verification *
Please Enter the Verification Code Seen Below
 


PLEASE NOTE
Please see our About Page, our Disclaimer, and our Comments Policy.


FAIR USE NOTICE
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which in some cases has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available for the purposes of news reporting, education, research, comment, and criticism, which constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. It is our policy to respond to notices of alleged infringement that comply with the DMCA and other applicable intellectual property laws. It is our policy to remove material from public view that we believe in good faith to be copyrighted material that has been illegally copied and distributed by any of our members or users.

About Us - Disclaimer - Privacy Policy



Advanced Search
Username:

Password:

Remember Me
Forgot Password?
Register

SWAT Team Shoots Teen Girl & Her Dog During Pot Raid On Wrong Home - 07/25The Drug War, the Fourth Amendment, and Anal Cavity Searches in New Mexico - 07/30Iowa Cop Accidentally Discharges Gun after Pursuing Man Experiencing Medical Condition - 07/30Mom Arrested For Allowing Her 7-Yr-Old Son To Go To Nearby Park Alone - 07/30Jeremy Scahill Says If You Get Pulled Over By Cops They Can See If You Are On A "Watch List" - 07/31Woman Sues After Becoming Unwitting Hostage In Unannounced Active Shooter Drill - 07/31Houston Cop Forces Family to Leave Blind Chihuahua at Roadside to Die in Traffic Stop - 07/30Michigan Hospital Security Guards Tase Handcuffed Man, Snatch Camera from Witness - 07/31

Rialto, CA Police Made to Wear Cameras, Use of Force Drops by Over Two-ThirdsCop Who Karate Chopped NY Judge In Throat Gets Off Scot-FreeFlorida Cop Smashes Compliant Woman's Face Into Car -- "Maybe Now You Can Understand Simple Instructions"VIDEO: Lapel Cam Reveals A Day In The Life Of A U.S. Police Officer (Tasing, Beating, Breaking & Entering, Stomping On Heads... and Laughing About It)Caught On Tape: Officer Sucker Punches Inmate In Face, Files Report Claiming 'Self Defense'Insult Person On Twitter, Go To JailSWAT Team Brings TV Crew To Film Raid Against Threatening Internet Critic -- Raids Innocent Grandma InsteadCop Karate Chops NY Judge In The Throat
(more)

 
Top