Majid Tehranian's Themes / Dilemmas of Comm. Policy (Com 650):

REGIMES / ISSUES Market Driven Government Driven Civil Society Driven
Global Commons vs. Squatters Efficiency vs. Equity Domination vs. Balance
National Monopoly vs. Competition Growth vs. Regulation Representation vs. Unity
Provincial & Local Access vs. Service Diversity Taxes vs. Subsidies Uniformity vs. Pluralism

Market Driven Regimes:

Commons vs. Squatters:  Global Issues

Two sides of appreciation of existing technology: 

Squatters:  just take and use it (if my data goes through your network, oh well) or

Commoners:  the leasehold idea (renting / paying a fee for the perceived hardware resources you use)

In International Telecommunication:  Who foots the bill?

Monopoly vs. Competition:  National Issues

Market desire to move towards monopoly (benefit one company, such as AT&T), or move to competitive (and sometimes diverse) network, benefiting LECs?

Often monopolies promote early growth (AT&T:  One system, One Policy, etc) for standardization and compatibility, spreading technology

Competition more likely in established markets where price becomes main problem, consumers feel they are being ripped off from their reliance on the technology

Access vs. Service Diversity:  Local Issues

Closely linked to monopoly vs. competition on the local level:  Faster access AND uniformity in service by a single company, while service diversity invites competitive pricing while possibly causing incompatibilities


Government Driven Regimes:

Efficiency vs. Equity:  Global Issues

Should policy be aimed at service as a whole:  promoting the growth of the new technology, or should policy attempt to control the power businesses have over their consumers?  (by protecting service costs and allowing for market competition)

Get the job done quickly, or do the job fairly?

Growth vs. Regulation:  National Issues

Similar to above:  Government policy often aims at growth early on with regulation after a technology has been established.  Thus the 'early adopters' often get screwed- late adopters pay less but are somewhat left behind in their 'old ways'

Taxes vs. Subsidies:  Local Issues

For example:  Providing policy to promote universal service:  Tax the urban, subsidize the rural areas so that universal service will be achieved faster.  This is somewhat unfair to urban areas but better for the 'whole' as the technology can become ubiquitous much quicker.  This is especially a problem in China- rural areas have been unsubsidized, left undeveloped while urban areas leapfrog ahead

Civil Society Driven Regimes:

Domination vs. Balance:  Global Issues

Goal is to put checks and balances in the global marketplace, have some global system of government that will prevent domination from occurring (unethical businesses or corrupt global bodies of government)

Representation vs. Unity:  National Issues

Aims to put checks / balances on the power of government / market forces and ensure that individuals are represented and not being taken advantage of- which may require some 'group' membership (if you don't stop, ALL of us will find other providers)

Uniformity vs. Pluralism:  Local Issues

This highlights the battle between service uniformity and diversity of service (at the local level)- where diversity of service promote competition and options, while uniform service ensures compatibility (and less headaches)