, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 185-208
Date: 18 Jul 2007

Broadband Internet: net neutrality versus open access

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Abstract

“Network neutrality” and “open access” are two policies designed to preserve openness on the Internet. Open access mandates openness of conduits (e.g. television cable and DSL) to intermediaries (e.g. America Online), while network neutrality mandates openness to advanced content (streaming video, interactive e-commerce, etc.). We develop a systems model with free entry and competition in all three industry segments (conduits, intermediaries, and content) and examine the effects of the two types of regulation. We find that open access does not necessarily result in more openness of content and is not a substitute for network neutrality.