# HIT & RUN BLOG

## If I Don't Own It, It Must Be a Monopoly

New at Reason: If more than 50 companies own most of the major media, is that a monopoly? Where did all these new channels come from? Can the man who brought you Who Will Marry Five Million Bears? be all bad? In our January cover story, Ben Compaine explains it all.

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The HHI index calculation is explained here:

http://www.usdoj.gov/atr/public/testimony/hhi.htm

Private citizens can bring anti-trust suits against firms if they so choose. Why aren't the "media watchdog" groups suing the "Big Media" for anti-trust violations if they think they have a slam-dunk case of monopolization?

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For the record: this is a much better article than the lack of posting indicates. Great research (AFAIK), great organization, writing and style.

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HHI is calculated as the summation of the squared percentage market shares of the 50 largest competitors. (At least, that's what I remember from my third year Industrial Economics class back in 1997/98.)

If one firm has 100% market share, the index is 1 x (1002.

If 100 firms each have 1% market share, the index is 50 x (12) = 50. (you only count the first 50 firms).

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Why I should use instead of assuming that this system accepts hmtl.

the above calculations should have read:

1 x (100^2) = 10,000

and

50 x (1^2) = 50

• D Lusional||

I thought Rupurt Murdoch owned it all anyway.

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Good piece. The bit about the HHI was interesting from a geek perspective. Anyone know how it is calculated?

I have never been able to wrap my head around the media monopoly arguments anyway. Somebody has to foot the bill, and the only way they can do that in a marketplace is to provide content people want. The alternative is to have the gov'ment dictate what content we should be subjected to, and I don't see how that is any better.

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The moaning about media consolidation always seems, to me anyway, to be little more than sour grapes from lefties over the fact that, oh my god, the common people actually enjoy Rush, Stern, and O'Reilly more than Bill Moyers or some other bland Democrat or hysterical leftist. The lefties also tend to put the cart before the horse; instead of recognizing that Rush et al are popular because so many people are "right-wing" and/or like lewd, crude humor, they fear that the existence of these commentators and comedians is brainwashing the populace into becoming "right-wing" and crude. The people who moan about media consolidation have no understanding of the market, and no respect for (and perhaps even a fear of) people's ability to choose their own sources of entertainment and information.

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Hmm. Neither Rush nor O'Reilly is crude. That's Stern. I don't know Stern's politics - his reputation for vulgarity is enough to keep me from listening to him. But Rush and O'Reilly are both gentlemen, in the sense that they do not slander their opponants (as opposed to giving their honest opinions).

Here's another excellent article:
http://www.hillsdale.edu/newimprimis/default.htm

Especially where it talks about federal licensing of media outlets and the abuses it is subject to.

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