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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Berkman Center report published on regulation and broadband

The Benkler team's study is here, and I'm going to digest it this evening and over the weekend. As it links pro-unbundling and regulatory commitment to market entry to lower broadband prices, inevitably it hammers Australia, Canada, the US - all in thrall to deregulatory free market policies and all of whom have failed to entice the Long Tail of poorer consumers to cheap bitstream offerings. I'll watch particularly closely to see if it critiques Germany and Spain in contrast to UK-Italy-France-Netherlands-Scandies.

Incidentally its bogus to claim the difference is that Canada, Australia and the US all have low population concentrations. Australia and Canada are amongst the most urbanised 'real' countries - leave out Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore - a high proportion huddle in cities along the coasts or Great Lakes-St Lawrence Rivers (and US border westwards). Iceland has low density and high concentration too. France has a more disparate population - and the fact is, broadband over copper can reach 96-8% of pretty much any developed country, dispersal is not relevant to the larger market picture, however important to that last 2-4%.

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