Feeds

OFT warns of monopolistic e-commerce firms

And you thought the Internet would save you money

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The Office of Fair Trading has warned that e-commerce companies are entering a monopoly position (well, oligopoly, but only economists tend to know what that means), and may soon be able to exploit their powers to rip off consumers.

While actually getting into an Internet market is relatively cheap, the huge branding efforts and customer loyalty mean that the cost of actually taking a slice of the market is extremely high. The OFT also reiterated what we all knew - that getting first to the market is a surefire way of controlling it.

According to the consumer watchdog, many online markets are natural monopolies, but on the plus side, the nature of the Internet means it can more easily check on other prices across the market from all over the world.

OFT's director general John Bridgeman said it was a matter of balancing the protection of consumers without stifling innovation. ®

Related link

The OFT report

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
XBOX One will learn to play media from USB and DLNA sources
Hang on? Aren't those file formats you hardly ever see outside torrents?
Class war! Wikipedia's workers revolt again
Bourgeois paper-shufflers have 'suspended democracy', sniff unpaid proles
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.