Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
April 18, 2003
LAW: Is an Ungoogled Life Worth Living?

Harvard Law Professor Jonathan Zittrain on the Google Death Penalty. Google's enormous influence does raise some interesting issues, perhaps more in the nature of policy than legal issues. I'm not an expert in antitrust economics, but it seems to me that Google is what you might call an ephemeral monopoly: the reach and influence of a monopolist, but coupled with the certainty that it could be easily unseated from its position in a heartbeat if it attempted to exploit the consumer, or - and this is key - if it was suddenly subjected to added regulatory/legal burdens that impeded the flexibility that got it where it is. I can see why that's frustrating to sites that get banned from Google, but the social downside of imposing any sort of hightened legal duty on an entity like Google solely due to its prominence would be counterproductive.

Of course, I've still never heard a good explanation of how Google makes any money, either.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 6:36 AM | Blog 2002-05 • | Law 2002-04 | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
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