Essays on Platforms: Business Strategies, Regulation and Policy in Telecommunications, Media and Technology Industries


Doctoral dissertation in Economics


Author: Joacim Tåg
Institution: Department of Economics, Hanken School of Economics, Helsinki, Finland

ISBN: 9789522320087 (print)
Year: 2008
Pages: 110

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Essay 1: Net Neutrality on the Internet: A Two-sided Market Analysis

Essay 2: Paying to Remove Advertisements

Essay 3: Open Versus Closed Platforms

Essay 4: Efficiency and the Provision of Open Platforms

The growth of the information economy has been stellar in the last decade. Generalpurpose technologies such as the computer and the Internet have promoted productivity growth in a large number of industries. The effect on telecommunications, media and technology industries has been particularly strong. These industries include mobile telecommunications, printing and publishing, broadcasting, software, hardware and Internet services. There have been large structural changes, which have led to new questions on business strategies, regulation and policy. This thesis focuses on four such questions and answers them by extending the theoretical literature on platforms. The questions (with short answers) are:

(i) Do we need to regulate how Internet service providers discriminate between content providers? (Yes.)

(ii) What are the welfare effects of allowing consumers to pay to remove advertisements from advertisement-supported products? (Ambiguous, but those watching ads are worse off.)

(iii) Why are some markets characterized by open platforms, extendable by third parties, and some by closed platforms, which are not extendable? (It is a tradeoff between intensified competition for consumers and benefits from third parties)

(iv) Do private platform providers allow third parties to access their platform when it is socially desirable? (No.)

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