Structural Separation

I’m in the midst of a long debate with Derek Slater (of Google) about structural separation.  He may post about it more on the Google policy blog at some point.   The key question is, when can an industry cut succeed in breathing life into dead markets – and when will it be counterproductive?

To my mind, looking at the history of telecom, a good regulator is like a very good butcher.  The trick is to not to chop to often, and know what it means to cut an industry at the joints, not the bone.  

This may be a bit ex poste, but my example of cutting at the joints is Carterfone – blasting open the consumer market for telephones, modems and the rest.   Trying to cut the bone is more like UNE-in-America  – resisted heavily, and never all THAT successful in building a competitive market of any kind.




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