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Re: Monopolies in publishing

I think you would be hard-pressed to make the case that an individual
publishing PRODUCT constitutes an illegal monopoly.  After all, that is
what copyright law grants, a limited monopoly in an intellectual property.  
A publishing COMPANY, on the other hand, could theoretically constitute a
monopoly, though as a practical matter, I can't see how.  The number of
publishers grows every year.

As for self-serving comments, that's what trade associations do, whether
it's the AAP, the ARL, or the AMA.  Comments that are self-serving are not
necessarily wrong.

Joe Esposito

----- Original Message -----
From: "Harvey Brenneise" <HBrenne@MPHI.org>
To: <liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu>
Sent: Wednesday, July 09, 2003 3:44 PM
Subject: RE: Monopolies in publishing

> I'm sure they could make some very self-serving comments on the subject.
> As for DOJ, like the Microsoft case, it's likely to have been a political
> decision that didn't really address the legal issues.  As I recall, the
> Clinton Administration was pursuing this, the current Administration may
> not have.  However, there IS a powerful new player on the block (the EC)
> that may also have a say about this.  Any unique product that has no
> direct competition (most publications would fall under that definition)
> are pretty much by definition a monopoly.  The question, really, is
> whether certain publishers have used their monopolies in extortionate
> ways.  And therein is the political decision.  An administration that
> believes business is always good, even when it is monopolistic is not
> likely to try to halt the behavior.
> Harvey Brenneise
> Michigan Public Health Institute
> hbrenne@mphi.org
> ***
> The Association of American Publishers (AAP) in Washington should be able
> to help with arguments about why the current regime is not a monopoly.
> The business news coverage of the acquisition of the Harcourt journals
> business by Reed a few years ago covered the monopoly issue extensively.
> You will recall that the Dep't of Justice decided that there was no
> monopoly.
> There is more information on the other side, of course, as Google will
> tell you.
> Joe Esposito