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An Economist's Guide to U.S. v. Microsoft

  • Gilbert, Richard J
  • Katz, Michael

The Microsoft antitrust case focused public attention on the role of antitrust enforcement in preserving the forces of innovation in high-technology markets. Traditionally, regulators focused on whether companies artificially hiked prices or reduced output. Now, they're increasingly likely to look first at whether corporate behavior aids or impedes innovation. In this paper, we examine whether innovation has displaced short-term price effects as the focus of antitrust enforcement by the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission and, to the extent that it has, whether enforcement actions are any different as a result. We also ask whether enforcement actions in the area of intellectual property and innovation have been consistent with the 1995 DOJ/FTC Antitrust Guidelines for the Licensing of Intellectual Property [IP Guidelines]. Finally, we consider whether recent enforcement actions identify key areas in which additional guidance from the Agencies would be desirable. We address these questions first in merger cases and then in non-merger cases.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley in its series Department of Economics, Working Paper Series with number qt56f8p06q.

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Date of creation: 01 May 2001
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:econwp:qt56f8p06q
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  1. Michael L. Katz & Carl Shapiro, 1985. "On the Licensing of Innovations," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(4), pages 504-520, Winter.
  2. Dennis W. Carlton & Michael Waldman, 2002. "The Strategic Use of Tying to Preserve and Create Market Power in Evolving Industries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 33(2), pages 194-220, Summer.
  3. Whinston, Michael D, 1990. "Tying, Foreclosure, and Exclusion," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(4), pages 837-59, September.
  4. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "The Search for R&D Spillovers," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 251-268 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Aghion, Philippe & Bolton, Patrick, 1987. "Contracts as a Barrier to Entry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 388-401, June.
  6. Salop, Steven C & Scheffman, David T, 1987. "Cost-Raising Strategies," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(1), pages 19-34, September.
  7. Charles I. Jones & John C. Williams, 1997. "Measuring the social return to R&D," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1997-12, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Reinganum, Jennifer F., 1989. "The timing of innovation: Research, development, and diffusion," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 14, pages 849-908 Elsevier.
  9. Richard Gilbert, 2000. "Exclusive Dealing, Preferential Dealing, and Dynamic Efficiency," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 167-184, March.
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