мая 22 2014

But it would make the market, as economists say, «contestable

Автор: | 0:56 | В рубриках Новости

telecom industry is in need of honest

canada goose coats No sooner had the Conservative government issued canada goose outlet usa its decision blocking Telus from taking over Mobilicity than the Conservative Party was raising funds off it. «Our Conservative government is taking action to reduce your cell phone bill,» ran the pitch, in emails that went out to party supporters that same day. «We will not allow the big telecommunications companies to shut down competition.» canada goose coats

canada goose uk outlet That’s nice. But the competition the government wants to protect is not competition as you or I understand it, where all the players are free to buy and sell in open markets and may the best firm win. Rather, canada goose jacket outlet toronto it’s a carefully circumscribed, artificially sustained affair, a kind of hothouse competition in which the weaker firms are kept https://www.pick-canadagoose.com in the game by government action, a simulacrum designed to preserve the illusion of competition in place of the real thing. That may be good for the industry, but it’s not clear it’s good for consumers. canada goose uk outlet

canada goose clearance The asset Telus hoped to acquire in the Mobilicity deal was its share of the Advanced Wireless Services spectrum used by some smartphones. But Mobilicity only came into possession of this commodity because of a 2008 federal policy that set aside a portion of the spectrum for new firms, with canada goose outlet store near me a proviso that it could not be transferred until next year. canada goose clearance

The company the feds now boast of preserving by policy was a creation of federal policy in the first place. But it was never particularly viable, and has never posed much of a competitive threat to the industry’s big three, Bell, Rogers and Telus. The best it can now look forward to is to be taken over by Wind Mobile, another relatively minor player that has struggled to find a place in the market.

canada goose factory sale That the government’s model of competition is proving less than robust was signalled by another regulatory edict this week, the CRTC’s «wireless code of conduct,» which decreed, inter alia, that cellphone companies may no longer hold consumers to three year contracts. canada goose factory sale

Whether this is a boon or a bane to consumers may be debated the most direct impact is to ensure such contracts will never be offered but what’s clear is that in a truly competitive market such intervention would be unnecessary: firms would offer three year contracts, or not, in obedience not to the demands of the regulator, but the tastes of consumers.

Canada Goose online But then, wireless is not the only part of the telecom sector where this sort of highly directed competition is the rule. Across the television and internet universe, also dominated by Rogers, Bell and Telus, along with Shaw Cable in the West and a handful of other players, the CRTC is engaged in the same kind of complex jiggery pokery. As with wireless, this is sometimes subject to cabinet over ride, adding a second layer of unpredictability. Canada Goose online

canada goose black friday sale The issue here is that the major carriers, the people who own the «pipes,» are also involved in producing the content that travels along them in competition, as it were, with their customers, the television networks and smaller internet service providers that pay to use them. The carriers’ obvious canada goose outlet uk conflict of interest in this regard is a constant source of controversy. canada goose black friday sale

canada goose clearance sale The flare up over usage based billing, for example, was in part based on the suspicion that the caps were aimed at limiting the retail ISPs’ share of the market. So, too, the recent CRTC hearings on «mandatory carriage» heard accusations that the carriers were favouring their own offerings over those of the applicants. The industry is consumed with this, an endless game of point the finger, again aimed at persuading the regulators, rather than consumers. canada goose clearance sale

Responses to this unsatisfactory state of affairs have tended to fall into two camps: either «regulate more, since competition isn’t working,» or, less often, «competition is working, more regulation would only make things worse.» I find myself drawn to a third position. It would be hard to say competition in canada goose outlet telecoms, in its present form, is working as well as it might. But there’s a better remedy than regulation. In place of the government’s stage managed competition, why not try the real thing for a change?

canada goose uk black friday What would it take to bring canada goose jacket outlet real competition to the industry?Two things. The first is to eliminate the remaining barriers to foreign ownership in telecoms. The hothouse model was premised on the argument that sufficient new competition could be generated from within. canada goose uk black friday

With that argument in tatters, it’s time to look further afield. Opening the borders wouldn’t necessarily mean a sudden influx of new carriers: even in countries without such restrictions, a handful of firms tend to dominate. But it would make the market, as economists say, «contestable.» Just the threat of a foreign invasion should be enough to keep the domestic players from getting too greedy.

canada goose uk shop The second is to break up the big telecom empires: to separate carriage from canada goose outlet in vancouver content, or the monopolistic from canada goose outlet official the competitive elements. Large infrastructure networks, like railways or telephone lines, tend naturally to monopoly. canada goose uk shop

Not canada goose outlet woodbury so the services that use them. Force the carriers to divest their content holdings, or spin their networks off into separate operations, and we need no longer worry whether the cable or phone companies were favouring their own content over other providers. Competition would flourish, without need of regulatory wetnurses.

We’ve tried the government’s way. It hasn’t worked. Protecting consumers from the ill effects of fake competition may give canada goose jacket outlet store the Conservatives an issue to raise funds with. But personally, I’d rather have real competition.

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