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The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires

New Yorker and Fortune Best Book of the Year

"A must-read for all Americans who want to remain the ones deciding what they can read, watch, and listen to.” —Arianna Huffington

Analyzing the strategic maneuvers of today’s great information powers—Apple, Google, and an eerily resurgent AT&T—Tim Wu uncovers a time-honored pattern in which invention begets industry and industry begets empire. 

It is easy to forget that every development in the history of the American information industry—from the telephone to radio to film—once existed in an open and chaotic marketplace inhabited by entrepreneurs and utopians, just as the Internet does today. Each of these, however, grew to be dominated by a monopolist or cartel.

In this pathbreaking book, Tim Wu asks: will the Internet follow the same fate? Could the Web—the entire flow of American information—come to be ruled by a corporate leviathan in possession of "the master switch"? Here, Tim Wu shows how a battle royale for the Internet’s future is brewing, and this is one war we dare not tune out.

Tim Wu is an author, policy advocate and professor at Columbia University, currently serving as Senior Advisor to the United States Federal Trade Commission.  In 2006, he was recognized as one of fifty leaders in science and technology by Scientific American magazine, and in the following year, 01238 magazine listed him as one of Harvard’s one hundred most influential graduates. He writes for Slate, where he won the Lowell Thomas gold medal for travel journalism, and he has contributed to The New Yorker, Time, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Forbes.

ISBN: 9780307390998

ISBN-10: 9780307390998

Publisher: Vintage

Publication Date: 11/29/2011 - 12:00am

On Sale: 11/29/2011 - 12:00am

Pages: 384

Language: English

Categories

Business & Economics / Industries / Computers & Information Technology

Computers / Information Theory

Social Science / Popular Culture