You're kidding, right? You're lucky if there's one endcap of PC games at GameStop, and I can't remember how many years it's been since I've even seen a software section for Apple computer systems. It's all console gaming today, so that's a pretty piss poor direction to go.
Way to miss the point champ.
10 years ago software companies (primarily games) avoided Apple OS because it was to small of a market, the size contrast between PC and Apple was huge. But today I can go
to the GameStop grab a game off the shelf and use it for PC or MAC. This implies that the gap has closed and thus MS share of the market (or monopoly if you will) is shrinking.
I'm not sure how repeating the same statement again makes it any less absurd. Where you go doesn't matter. I haven't seen a MAC game on a shelf in any store for a long time. You used to have a MAC section, a PC section, and then a console game section. Now, you have a number of console and handheld game sections, a small PC section and no MAC section. It's an irrelevant point given how most games are purchased today, but you're wrong even on your own silly side point.
No. I never said that. I said that when government does step in and regulate companies, it rarely actually does so in ways which benefit the consumers, or which actually limit the monopolistic aspects of the company or industry. Usually, it just shifts the company's focus from a free market product methodology (which usually benefits consumers but hurts competition), to a government regulation methodology (which usually hurts consumers).
You never said that.
Here's a neat test: Quick! Think of a monopoly. Baring that, think of a company which we have to regulate to prevent becoming a monopoly (or had to in the past). Got one? Got five? Write the name(s) down.
Now... Did that company operate in a way which required government licensing, land use, application of eminent domain on their behalf, etc? I'm quite sure that you'd have a hard time thinking of any monopoly or near monopoly in the history of the US that wasn't created because of government intervention itself. Either land rights for railroads, licensing/easements for utilities, broadcast licenses for telecoms, or some other similar arrangement. It's hard to look at the history of "bad business" and not see that overwhelmingly it's not a free market which creates such problems, but government intervention which does. Now in some cases, we have no choice. Can't have 50 companies ripping up the street every week to run stuff into people's houses, so we have to grant licenses to companies via geography to operate such things.
My argument all along has been that government regulation rarely prevents monopolies, but either creates them directly, or makes them worse. Microsoft is just an example of the government making things worse. How the hell did you read all of those posts by me and manage to fail to get this? Shall I continue?
Here's me specifically saying that government action made MS's monopolistic actions worse:
Do you know when Microsoft first started lobbying? After it began to get sued by everyone and their brother under laws passed by competitors and it realized that it had to play in the same "control the regulators" game to survive. Do you know when it really started manipulating the market in unfair ways? After that happened. While some of its business practices beforehand (bundling stuff with their OS for example) was a but pushy, they could be worked around (and quite often were).
Here's me emphasizing that point:
Because of government regulation, Microsoft gets to sell OS licenses for pretty much every employee at every publicly traded corporation in the US. Guaranteed income (and massive leverage into other parts of the market). That happened because of government regulation, not because MS used their own market power to bundle "free" utilities into their OS package.
Here's me answering Joph when he missed what I was talking about:
No. I said that it's rare for the free market to generate monopolies, but that in that rare case, we absolutely can and should have just enough government regulation to prevent them from using an unfair market advantage to further extend control/power. The problem is that currently it seems like the government acts most to institutionalize monopolistic behavior and not the other way around.
Here's me emphasizing that point:
Yup. Nothing wrong with that. The problem is that instead of teaching Microsoft the lesson that they should not bundle software in their OS in order to leverage that power into market share into the applications market, Microsoft learned the lesson that "thou shalt not be a large corporation without buying political cover". Microsoft is more of a monopoly today than it was in the mid 90s, yet it suffers no lawsuits, and gets no negative press.
Do you think that government intervention helped or hurt?
I could go on and quote a dozen more paragraphs from me all repeating over and over that my point is that government regulation tends to do more harm than good. Can you please accept that this *is* my point and maybe stop tossing strawman arguments around so you can stomp on them?
You said the government doesn't step in and regulate companies that are or are approaching monopoly status.
No. I said that government does regulate those companies, but that it's regulation rarely actually prevents the monopolistic actions and usually makes them worse.
You were so confident you asked for at least 1 example, someone said MS, and I added 5 more cases where the government stepped in and said no (and there is at least half a dozen more I didn't list.)
Two people said MS. And my response was then and is now that MS became more of a monopoly *after* the government stepped in to regulate it than it was before. Which still fits with my broader argument that government regulation isn't the solution to our market problems.
I've also freely stated that government *should* regulate to prevent monopolies. But the problem is that it doesn't seem to actually do this. What it does is take the monopoly (or potential monopoly) and turn it into some kind of public/private partnership which gives the government a piece of the action more or less in return for looking the other way. In return for lobbying cash, the politicians provide political cover for the company.
That's exactly what happened with Microsoft. And I still say you'd be hard pressed to provide examples (in the last half century or so at least), where the US government has actually stepped in to prevent monopolistic abuse by a company and in which the market became more free (less bound to corruption and abuse) as a result. Feel free to find examples. Like I said, folks tossed out MS, but it doesn't violate the argument I'm making at all. If anything, it's a perfect example of exactly what I'm saying. We can argue that MS was building a monopoly (and might even have been one) at the time the government did step in, but that government regulation didn't really do anything about MS's monopoly. It didn't break the company up. It didn't force them to stop bundling software (like browsers) into it's OS. All it did was toss some relatively toothless requirements at it. Saying "You get to keep the control of the industry, but you have to make it a bit easier for other software developers to write stuff to work with your software" is hardly an act to prevent monopoly.
No that would be a retarded argument considering the cost of actually getting a computer is a fraction of the cost it was 15 years ago. This means that MS OS sells more now then it did 15 years ago. What I am arguing is that MS OS has lost market share because it is not the only OS in the computing market. Apple OS, Android both are doing much better than MS OS in the handheld/mobile markets.
Ok. But you're mixing markets. How many times do I have to explain that those are not the same market? Question is why are you so adamant about refusing to acknowledge that MS presence in modern computing is virtually non existant. Desk Tops are not the only computing devices, focusing solely on one aspect of the market to prove your point is retarded. Sure MS is doing great in desk tops (and laptops) but it has no presence in the new mobile/handheld markets. The only reason MS is relevant in Desk Tops is because it made itself available for all manufacturers just like Android has done in the mobile/handheld market.
Because those are two different markets. Microsoft isn't a leader in operating systems running the computer in your car either. Nor do they control the software systems which run your DVR, Blueray, and Television. I'm not sure what your point is. You seem to be attempting to argue that MS does not have more of a monopoly in the computer market today than it did 15 years ago because if we add in a bunch of new handheld devices which didn't exist 15 years ago, it doesn't have a large a hold in that market. That's beside the point though. Those are appliances, not servers. You don't generally download things *from* your handheld device. You download *to* them. You usually are downloading *from* some sort of actual computer server somewhere. And today, the odds of that server running on MS (or MS somehow getting a licensing piece of the pie) is much higher today than it was 15 years ago (or even 10 years ago).
MS doesn't need to compete more than a small amount in that handheld market, because as that market grows, it automatically makes more money on the backend server side of the business. Don't you see that? All they care about is that the devices use a model that continues to provide that cash flow. If MS was the big scary monopoly you are trying to make it out to be then they would be at the forefront of the new market. They are not.
Lol! If you knew how deeply involved MS is in manipulating the standards used by mobile devices today, you'd realize just how hysterical that statement is. They aren't at the front because they learned that it's easier to make money from the back. Less public perception that they're running things that way. They don't need to be at the forefront to make money. In fact, it's better for them not to.
I could probably spend a dozen paragraphs explaining the complex licensing arrangement involved in the mobile device market to you, but you likely would not understand it, and it's entirely possible I'd be violating some kind of NDA or something. You'll just have to take my word for it that MS is far far more involved in that market than Joe average public thinks. They don't control the individual devices, but they absolutely have a finger in the software written on them and how it interacts with other software. It's not "magic" that allows you to browse online stores and download stuff to those devices. It's a hell of a lot of standards and license agreements which make it happen. Lots of companies get pieces of that pie. Edited, Dec 6th 2011 6:49pm by gbaji