In this issue: The focus of much of this issue concerns digital media and communications, but first we introduce CPI’s new publishing technology with two audio interviews with leading competition authorities. Then we look at the interplay among online communications platforms, consumer privacy, and consumer protection. We examine what import a price of zero has for […]

Practical Aspects of Aftermarkets in European Competition Law

John Temple Lang, May 20, 2011 An “aftermarket” is a market for the supply of products or services needed for or in connection with the use of a relatively long-lasting piece of equipment that has already been acquired. Aftermarkets give rise to several kinds of questions under competition law. Does a relevant market for competitive analysis consist of separate […]

Payment Card Regulation and the Use of Economic Analysis in Antitrust

Jean Tirole, May 20, 2011 To view a streaming, live presentation on June 15 of the special CPI/Pymnts Brussels conference on The Impact of Interchange Fee Regulation on European Payment Cards, visit here. A key input of our modern economies, payment cards are ubiquitous; debit and credit cards offer a wide range of alternatives to cash […]

Ofcom’s Approach and Priorities for Consumer Protection & Empowerment

Andrea Coscelli, Claudio Pollack, May 20, 2011 This paper discusses Ofcom’s current activities related to consumer protection and empowerment. It describes our approach and framework for analysis, and goes on to examine those areas we currently treat as our top priorities. We do so by exploring the following questions: What is the role of consumer policy? What do […]

Applications Want to be Free: Privacy Against Information

Michael Hammock, Paul Rubin, May 20, 2011 The debate over online privacy pays too little attention to the costs and benefits of the current systems of privacy protection and advertising-supported online applications. The costs of online privacy-related harm (such as identity theft) and of protective activities are small relative to the benefits from applications that are supported by online […]

Journalism, Competition, and the Digital Transition

Oliver Bethell, Matthew Bye, May 17, 2011 This article considers the role of competition law and policy in shaping the news industry’s digital transition. It begins by examining the shifting landscape for traditional media companies and describing Google’s approach to news. The article then addresses arguments that exemptions from the antitrust laws are necessary to facilitate a digital transition […]

Conversations with Jon Leibowitz and Joaquin Almunia

Joaquin Almunia, David Evans, Jon Leibowitz, May 19, 2011 Competition policy has grown explosively in the last quarter century. There are more than 100 countries with competition authorities and many of these authorities are becoming more active, influential, and professional. They are also talking with each other on a regular basis through many formal and informal channels. The managers of these […]

The Intersection of Consumer Protection and Competition in the New World of Privacy

Julie Brill, May 20, 2011 Privacy issues are becoming increasingly important during this time of rapid technological advance. This article addresses the important question of how the FTC might balance the consumer protection concerns arising in the context of privacy with competition issues. It will first examine the basic principles of consumer protection and competition law, the two core […]

The Antitrust Economics of Free

David Evans, May 20, 2011 This article examines antitrust analysis when one of the possible subject products of an antitrust or merger is ordinarily offered at a zero price. It shows that businesses often offer a product for free because it increases the overall profits they can earn from selling the free product and a […]