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The Effect of Regulation on Broadband Markets: Evaluating the Empirical Evidence in the FCC’s 2015 “Open Internet” Order

Thomas W. Hazlett () and Joshua D. Wright ()
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Thomas W. Hazlett: Clemson University
Joshua D. Wright: George Mason University

Review of Industrial Organization, 2017, vol. 50, issue 4, No 7, 487-507

Abstract: Abstract In 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) imposed common carriage regulation—so-called Title II requirements—on previously unregulated broadband Internet service providers. The regime shift was premised on the FCC’s findings that such rules had demonstrably yielded economic gains. This paper evaluates the FCC’s empirical arguments and finds them uncompelling. Adjustments for inflation or general economic trends eliminate the effects cited by the FCC. Moreover, contrary to the Commission’s assessment, mobile services and broadband markets have shown notable growth in response to deregulatory events that reduce Title II requirements.

Keywords: Network neutrality; Vertical foreclosure; Broadband regulation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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DOI: 10.1007/s11151-016-9556-6

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