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The part where 20 years of natural selection by markets has resulted in a few ginormous companies owning the Net?

Yahoo "owned" the net not that long ago, now they're completely irrelevant. Microsoft "owned" the browser market with Internet Explorer not that long ago, now people cringe when they have to use IE. MySpace was at one time the most visited social media site in the world, now it's merely a quirky bit of internet history.

Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc. do not "own" anything. They are businesses that exist in a fiercely competitive environment in which consumers have zero loyalty and will gladly switch to the next hot thing at the drop of a hat. These businesses are successful because they continually innovate and deliver products that people want. There's no guarantee that any of these companies will still be around in a decade, much less "own" the market they operate in.

> Microsoft "owned" the browser market with Internet Explorer not that long ago

And monopoly regulation put an end to that and allowed Netscape to come in and make it a competition.

Microsoft bundled Internet Explorer for free into its operating system, whereas Netscape Navigator was not free at the time. This was deemed "unfair" because Navigator was Netscape's flagship product, so if users were given a free alternative, Netscape would be put out of business.

It was really an absurd case considering that 100% of internet users use a free browser these days.

That a handy assertion, but what replaced IE was not Netscape, but Firefox and later Chrome. IE6, IE7, and IE8 had massive market share up until recently. Now Chrome is the king.

Sorry, but that's backwards.

Netscape was selling their browser before Microsoft got smacked down by the DOJ.

In fact, Microsoft's bundling of IE with Windows was some of the strongest evidence showing that they were abusing their market position. By bundling a free alternative they basically destroyed the market of for-pay web browsers, and killed off Netscape while they were at it.

A "competition" where MS owned the market with IE at 90% right up until Google ate their lunch with Chrome and became the 90% player. Google probably could have done that without the monopoly action, and now we need that action against Chrome because the real issue is the influence the 90% player has on the open standards, not the regulable bundling with operating systems.

Where is Netscape now?

Mozilla is its offspring, isn't it?

Don't forget MySpace.

I am guessing/wondering if they really own the net, in the sense that they can squash any would-be competitors, in which case breaking them up is (in the US) an application of antitrust legislation?

yeah but is that just a snapshot of a process before a "refactoring" that would occur naturally? i mean, i don't know the answer, but wonder that question.

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