Internet Ecosystem Economics Task Force
In 2013 the Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee launched the Internet Ecosystem Economics Task Force to place more emphasis on educating policymakers about underlying economics issues that inform Internet policy. The new task force will be chaired by David Young (Verizon) and John Bergmayer (Public Knowledge), bringing balance and experience to this important endeavor. See press release.
While the term “media convergence” became hackneyed long ago, its implications for Internet, telecom and media policymaking are only beginning to come into focus. The economics of how the advent of the Internet is transforming industries operating in the areas of broadband, film, TV, mobile devices, web sites, search engines, advertising networks, online video providers, wireless carriers and everyone in between is little understood and evolving. Some leading thinkers view the evolution of the Internet ecosystem leading ominously toward hegemony and dominance by a select few select ICT players. Others counter that success in the Internet ecosystem will only be realized by firms that continue to innovate aggressively and provide consumers with value. In order to legislate effectively, policymakers must understand the economics of the Internet ecosystem as it is evolving. Therefore the ICAC will host debates about the the prevailing arguments about Internet ecosystem economics.
The Internet economy changes fast, but some things stay the same. Users still need some way to connect, wireless access providers still need spectrum, wired broadband providers have to deal with local governments and arcane requirements while still earning a return on their investment, and debates over the proper role of access networks keep recurring….