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From that I see this:

"The classic example of rent-seeking, according to Robert Shiller, is that of a feudal lord who installs a chain across a river that flows through his land and then hires a collector to charge passing boats a fee (or rent of the section of the river for a few minutes) to lower the chain. There is nothing productive about the chain or the collector. The lord has made no improvements to the river and is helping nobody in any way, directly or indirectly, except himself. All he is doing is finding a way to make money from something that used to be free."

I am not seeing in any way the comparison between a company that maintains infrastructure and employs people and machinery to accomplish issuing and enabling domains and keeping them functioning on the Internet and "a feudal lord who installs a chain across a river....there is nothing productive about the chain or the collector".




From that I see this:

Wow. It's like we are reading two different articles. If Verisign isn't doing typical rent-seeking, then we might as well delete the Wiki entry, because the concept doesn't exist.

Just from paragraph 1:

   seeking to increase one's share of existing
   wealth without creating new wealth.
Exactly what Verisign is doing. They are supplying infrastructure to the Internet. They're not creating anything, they're simply charging everyone an excessive fee for using the existing Internet. They're inserting themselves into every single .com and .net domain purchase or renewal.

From paragraph 2:

   capture of regulatory agencies to gain a coercive
   monopoly can result in advantages for the rent
   seeker in the market
Regulatory capture. This is exactly what happened when ICANN awarded no-bid contracts to Verisign, under the pretense that no other firm would have the capacity to do it.[1]

[1] http://timothyblee.com/2010/01/22/verisign-angling-for-no-bi...


Verisign isn't hitching the proverbial chain across the river, because they are a necessary part of the domain registration of domain names. They are providing a necessary service and raising the barrier to entry with their patents. If their role were unnecessary, then it would be rent seeking behavior.




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