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Building and Delivering the Virtual World: Commercializing Services for Internet Access

This study analyzes the service offerings of Internet Service Providers (ISPs), the commercial suppliers of Internet access in the United States. It presents data on the services of 2089 ISPs in the summer of 1998. By this time, the Internet access industry had undergone its first wave of entry and many ISPs had begun to offer services other than basic access. This paper develops an Internet access industry product code which classifies these services. Significant heterogeneity across ISPs is found in the propensity to offer these services, a pattern with an unconditional urban/rural difference. Most of the explained variance in behavior arises from firm-specific factors, with only weak evidence of location-specific factors for some services. These findings provide a window to the variety of approaches taken to build viable businesses organizations, a vital structural feature of this young market.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w7690.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 7690.

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Date of creation: May 2000
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Greenstein, Shane. "Building And Delivering The Virtual World: Commercializing Services For Internet Access," Journal of Industrial Economics, 2000, v48(4,Dec), 391-411.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7690
Note: IO PR
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
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  1. Shane Greenstein, . "Commercialization of the Internet: The Interaction of Public Policy and Private Choices," IPR working papers 00-11, Institute for Policy Resarch at Northwestern University.
  2. Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin Hitt, 1997. "Information Technology as a Factor of Production: The Role of Differences Among Firms," Working Paper Series 201, MIT Center for Coordination Science.
  3. Shane M. Greenstein & Mercedes M. Lizardo & Pablo T. Spiller, 1997. "The Evolution of Advanced Large Scale Information Infrastructure in the United States," NBER Working Papers 5929, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Susan Athey & Scott Stern, 1998. "An Empirical Framework for Testing Theories About Complimentarity in Organizational Design," NBER Working Papers 6600, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Trajtenberg, M. & Bresnahan, T.F., 1992. "General Purpose Technologies: "Engines of Growth"," Papers 16-92, Tel Aviv.
  6. Demsetz, Harold, 1988. "The Theory of the Firm Revisited," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(1), pages 141-61, Spring.
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521416672 is not listed on IDEAS
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