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The Spanish Google tax, or (twice) the perfect cartel

marzo 19, 2014 No Comments

It is always tempting for firms in sectors in decline to collude. But a cartel may not always be feasible or successful. Sometimes, major competitors have no interest in playing the game (this may be so for various reasons; competitors may have a different cost structure, may be more efficient or use a different technology). The next trick is well known. If private collusion does not work, turn to the State to enforce an official cartel or to (bluntly) eliminate competition from other players. You want a well-functioning and sustainable cartel? Make sure that anti-dumping duties are imposed on your heartless competitors from other parts of the world.

Montebourg, who has become an endless source of competition-related stories, has been quite open (I admit he is very candid, both in the English and the Spanish sense of the word) about his dislike for Free Mobile and has even taken active steps to make its life more difficult. The operator has emerged as a phenomenal maverick, bringing much needed dynamism to the French mobile market. But apparently prices are too low for Monsieur le Ministre’s taste and French consumers, as responsible and forward-looking citizens of the Republic, should pay more for their calls (he has in fact referred to the ‘excesses of low-cost’). Needless to say, the three incumbent mobile operators are not particularly unhappy about the whole deal.

The proposed Google tax in Spain provides yet another example of State-enforced collusion, albeit a more subtle one (which is not difficult given that our dear Arnaud is leading the way in the abovementioned example). Traditional newspapers struggle to survive in Spain. Advertising revenues have been in steep decline for years and media groups are heavily indebted. The solution? Charge Google, which has become the default cash-cow (and access-cow), for the use of non-significant excerpts (which, I would mention in passing, sounds oxymoronic from a copyright law perspective).

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Los medios AEDE pierden 1,7 millones de visitas desde el boicot de Menéame Leer más: Los medios AEDE pierden 1,7 millones de visitas desde el boicot de Menéame – Noticias de Tecnología http://bit.ly/RHIHUY

marzo 18, 2014 No Comments

ElconfidencialEl pasado 17 de febrero, con motivo del anuncio de la tasa Google, los usuarios de Menéame iniciaron un boicot contra las noticias de los medios adscritos a AEDEla asociación de diarios que apoya la medida gubernamental. Transcurrido un mes, los datos son elocuentes: las visitas de los medios de AEDE en Menéame han caído desde los 1,7 millones que registraban mensualmente a las 17.500 visitas. O, lo que es lo mismo, un descenso del 99%, que absorben cabeceras como El PaísEl MundoABCMarca, AS y la mayor parte de los regionales.

 

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Leer más:  Los medios AEDE pierden 1,7 millones de visitas desde el boicot de Menéame – Noticias de Tecnología