Thomas M. Lenard


Radio Should Pay – or (Maybe) Receive – Market-Based Royalties

The Fair Play Fair Pay Act attempts to do away with the statutory zero rate paid by terrestrial radio stations, a desirable reform. Indeed, if radio stations start to pay positive royalties, it might even put downward pressure on the royalties paid by other distribution services, helping them to eventually earn a profit.

A Counterproductive Privacy Bill

Privacy activists appear to have some new friends among congressional Republicans. House Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and cosponsors have introduced comprehensive privacy legislation that would apply a strict new privacy regime across the entire internet ecosystem.

The Choice for FTC Chair and the Rule of Law

It should go without saying that the choice for this position should be determined by the candidate’s competence and whether his or her philosophical outlook is in line with the administration’s. Unfortunately, what should go without saying seems to require saying this time around.

An Economics Bureau for the FCC

Beyond process reform, the FCC needs some structural reform. In particular, it should create an Economics Bureau tasked with conducting economic analyses of proposed rules, mergers and other important actions, much like the Bureau of Economics at the Federal Trade Commission.

ICANN — A Regulator in Need of Antitrust Oversight

The pending transition of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers away from U.S. government oversight has involved in-depth discussion about how to maintain an open internet free from government control. What has received considerably less attention in these discussions is how ICANN has performed while under U.S. oversight—especially as a regulator. This lack of attention can partly be attributed to ICANN’s insistence that, as its president Göran Marby said at a Senate hearing last week, “ICANN is not a regulator.”

Brussels’ Misguided Campaign against Competition

  It’s no secret to those attending this week’s American Bar Association’s annual antitrust meeting that the biggest technology companies are in the crosshairs of European regulators. In what appears to be a further ratcheting up of this campaign, Europe’s Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, who will be addressing the antitrust practitioners, seems poised to […]