This page includes all of my professional work.


AI’s Automatic Stabilizers – March 05, 2024 – AEIdeas – Automatic stabilizers are government mechanisms, like unemployment insurance and progressive taxes, that help to stabilize the economy without needing direction from Congress. In a similar way, there are a range of mechanisms that will automatically stabilize artificial intelligence (AI) adoption without Congress acting.

Child Online Safety Enforcement at Scale – February 16, 2024 – AEIdeas – All of the players involved in social media, including the large platforms, want to deal with the problem of child sexual exploitation and abuse (CSEA) offenses. But the sheer volume of reporting has created problems.

To Understand AI Adoption, Focus on the Interdependencies – February 12, 2024 – AEIdeas – If we want to understand how AI technology is likely to progress, how it will affect workers, and how it might impact productivity, we should be focused on understanding its interdependencies. AI is getting adopted into work processes, but like any other tech adoption, it will take time to actually shake out.

The Complex Case of TikTok in the United States – January 30, 2024 – CGO Policy Paper – This paper aims to document TikTok’s moment in the spotlight, charting its rise in prominence and its recent legal troubles. Only with this context can the most important public policy questions be answered: What risks, if any, does TikTok pose? How would a ban work in practice? What other options are available? And most important of all, is any of this even constitutional?

Focusing on the workforce will turn the CHIPS Act into a high-tech triumph – January 9, 2024 – Washington Examiner – The growth of well-paying manufacturing jobs has been one of the selling points for the CHIPS Act. But creating jobs should not be the primary lens through which we view this act. While employment opportunities are a welcome byproduct, the primary goal should be to elevate the U.S. as a leader in high-tech manufacturing. Building a workforce to staff the new chip factories will be where the bill succeeds or fails.


The Political Economy of the CHIPS and Science Act – November 14, 2023 – CGO Research in Focus – This primer is designed to bridge a void in the existing literature by examining the semiconductor industry from a political economy perspective. Here is the paper’s nutgraf: “Chip fabrication faces unique economic conditions that tend to push out supply lines to Taiwan, South Korea, and China. When COVID hit, the reliance on Chinese and East Asian production became clear as supply chain issues arose, creating the crucible for the CHIPS and Science Act.”

AI, Canadian regulation, and ChatGVT – October 14, 2023 – Fraser Institute – This presentation offers an analysis of AI advancements and regulatory frameworks in Canada. It first traces the progression of AI technologies, emphasizing the pivotal role of generative pre-trained transformers and their implications for future policy. The discussion extends to the Canadian government’s legislative maneuvers with the Artificial Intelligence and Data Act (AIDA), projecting the potential trajectories and impacts of such regulations on AI development and application.

New Net Neutrality Rules Could Threaten Popular Services – October 3, 2023 – Reason – Since the FCC’s last attempt at pushing net neutrality rules, the dynamics have shifted. Following January 6th, Google, Apple and Amazon distanced from Parler. Then last year, Cloudflare withdrew from Kiwifarms. Power dynamics are evolving.

Are ‘Killer Acquisitions’ by Tech Giants a Real Threat to Competition? – October 3, 2023 – CGO Research in Focus – In this brief, I define what is meant by a killer acquisition. I then explain why the Facebook-Instagram merger wasn’t a killer acquisition. I use the framework set out by Cunningham, Ederer, and Ma to explain why Zuckerberg decided to buy the app company. Following this, I chart the relationship between killer acquisitions and a concept called “the kill zone.” Finally, I review the benefits of acquisitions from the point of the seller.

New AI poll reveals elites are way out of step with the rest of us – September 26, 2023 – Fox News – In Silicon Valley, Congress, and the Biden administration, leaders are buzzing about AI. For those in the Valley, killer robots with lasers for eyes dominate the conversation. The Beltway, in contrast, is spending a lot of political capital to deal with bias in algorithms. And yet, the general public isn’t primarily worried about either machines gaining control or about algorithms being biased. What concerns them about AI are the national security implications and the potential for job losses.

Let’s use AI to clean up government – July 21, 2023 – Fox News – ChatGPT needs to be turned on the government. A ChatGVT is needed. A ChatGVT could take any number of forms, as I write, “It could provide straight answers about the newest tax plan, if a bill is stuck in committee, or the likelihood that a piece of legislation will pass. Or a ChatGVT could be turned on the regulatory code to understand its true cost to households and businesses…Using AI to turn law into code will mean that the true impact of government will be understandable and accessible. Most know that the burden imposed by regulation is colossal but the exact costs are hard to quantify. A ChatGVT could help sort out that problem.”

Real Options Analysis Could Help Improve Regulatory Decisions – June 22, 2023 – Regulatory filing – The OMB’s Draft Circular A-4 proposes that real options analysis should be considered in “some situations . . . when you are regulating an exhaustible resource or an endangered species.” However, to fully leverage this analytical tool’s potential, it is essential for the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to endorse its broader application in benefit-cost analysis.

As I argue, the adoption of real options analysis in regulatory proceedings would serve to intensify the examination of three critical, yet often underemphasized, elements of any regulation including irreversibility, how easily a regulation could be revoked once implemented; uncertainty over the future benefits and costs of the regulation; and timing or the value in postponing action to get more information. While this method may not entirely eliminate ineffective regulations, it can provide a reliable framework for informed and accountable decision-making in the public sector.

Public Interest Comment on the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) AI Accountability Policy Request for Comment – June 13, 2023 – Regulatory filing – The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has issued a Request for Comment (RFC) on “how to develop a productive AI accountability ecosystem.” This public interest comment is written by CGO senior research fellows Neil Chilson and Will Rinehart and cosigned by other policy centers and experts. In it, the authors draw NTIA’s attention to society’s existing and highly effective accountability ecosystem for software: markets. Our society has been using markets to hold software, algorithms, and automated systems accountable for decades.

Public Interest Comment for the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) on the Intersection of Privacy, Equity, and Civil Rights – March 6, 2023 – Regulatory filing – The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) recently put out a proceeding to better understand how commercial entities data collect and use data. Importantly, it was seeking to understand how “specific data collection and use practices potentially create or reinforce discriminatory obstacles for marginalized groups regarding access to key opportunities, such as employment, housing, education, healthcare, and access to credit.” What the NTIA seeks to tackle is a wicked problem in Rittel and Webber’s classic definition.

The first section explains how data-generating processes can create legibility but never solve the problem of illegibility. The second section explains what is meant by bias, breaks down the problems in model selection, and walks through the problem of defining fairness. The third section explores why people have a distaste for the kind of moral calculations made by machines and why we should focus on impact.

Thoughts on what the CDC YRBS data means for social media, teens, and mental health – March 14, 2023 – Now+Next – On February 13, The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released “The Youth Risk Behavior Survey Data Summary & Trends Report: 2011–2021,” a summary of the latest findings from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS). What is most worrying about this release is the mental health decline of adolescent Americans, especially teenage girls. But when you begin back in the late 1960s, when the CDC began collecting data, it becomes clear that the US has already survived at least one great wave of poor teen mental health.

CGO’s Social Media Toolkit – March 7, 2023 – This legislative session has seen a proliferation of bills related to minors and social media. To help parents and policymakers navigate this new and complex environment, I wrote CGO’s Social Media Toolkit. It includes:

Are Utah’s social media bills the path forward? – February 9, 2023 – The Benchmark – Utah is making waves for a pair of bills moving through the state House and Senate aimed at protecting kids from social media. These new laws wouldn’t just be for teens and their parents. They would mandate ID verification for every Utahn. Since expired ID cards won’t count, the poor and the elderly will be hit the hardest. If it all works as the bill authors hope, social media companies will soon be in the possession of highly sensitive personal information. All regulation is difficult to comply with, but these new rules would be especially difficult to implement.

Improving the FDA: Lessons Learned from COVID-19 Rapid Tests – January 26, 2023 – CGO Policy Paper – The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does critically important work to ensure drugs and food are safe. However, the agency has a long history of delaying decisions, especially when it comes to at-home diagnostic tests. In this policy paper, I review the FDA’s history of delay, the economic logic behind delays, and the legal underpinnings of diagnostic testing regulation. I end with presenting and explaining recommendations for how Congress can reform the FDA to make it more responsive, especially in times of emergency.

Don’t use ‘Twitter Files’ to eliminate Section 230 – January 5, 2023 – Washington Examiner – It is hard not to read the drips coming from the Twitter Files as confirming the worst fears of conservatives. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has argued that abolishing Section 230 will fix all of this from happening in the future. Such a dramatic move is a misdiagnosis that would have the effect of removing a cornerstone of the dynamic internet economy. Sweeping policy changes aren’t needed to change Twitter. What is needed is a change in company culture and more transparency. Love him or hate him, Musk seems to be on his way to doing both.


We Need an Abundance Agenda – December 7, 2022 – Discourse Magazine – Policymakers, the commentariat and others in positions of power are waking up to the fact that scarcity is a serious public policy problem. While some of that scarcity comes from technological limitations which will require innovation, a good deal of it is self-inflicted. What is needed is a reversal of the policies that created these scarcity trends. What is needed is an agenda based on abundance.

Public Interest Comment on the FTC Trade Regulation Rule on Commercial Surveillance and Data Security – November 30, 2022 – Public interest comment – The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is pursuing a topic of immense importance to the American public and economy with its proposed rulemaking on commercial surveillance and data security. Indeed, if the agency moves to an NPRM, it is likely to go beyond its authority. Congress would be better suited to provide guidance, which the Commission could then implement. Still, many of the questions in this ANPRM rest on fundamental assumptions that are still debated and remain unresolved. However, if the FTC does pursue a rule, there will be costs that could easily outweigh the benefits.

What is the cost of privacy legislation? – November 17, 2022 – The Benchmark – In Congress and at the Federal Trade Commission, there has been a growing interest in implementing comprehensive privacy legislation that reaches beyond our current sectoral system of protection. But even as privacy laws aim to protect consumers, they also impose costs. This post is a literature review compiling all of the known estimates from researchers and government agencies on the costs created by privacy laws. As policymakers consider different paths, they should be fully cognizant of the costs imposed by these laws.

Is Common Carriage a Good Framework for Social Media Platforms? – November 1, 2022 – Center for Growth and Opportunity’s Research in Focus Paper Series – Proposals targeting Big Tech have popped up in Congress, as well as state legislatures. Because these proposals potentially violate the First Amendment, proponents are looking for an alternative path for their laws to survive. At the moment, common carrier regulation is the preferred alternative path. Common carriage is a long-debated legal term intended to prevent discrimination in the offering of publicly-available goods and services. But, as my coauthor and I point out, “Mandating a certain kind of product quality is not common carriage regulation. It is price regulation.” Ultimately, we find that common carriage is not a useful framework for regulating social media companies.

The abundance agenda – October 15, 2022 – Exformation Newsletter – This quick update offers some context to my recent Boston Review piece, explains the Henry Adams curve, and lays out a list of action items to make the abundance agenda happen.

The Abundance Agenda – September 13, 2022 – Boston Review – The pandemic showed that innovation can happen quickly, with vaccines designed and produced at record speed. So there are good reasons to be optimistic that we can do dramatically better in the future. The politics we need now is one focused on building smarter, cheaper, and better. Ezra Klein calls it “supply-side progressivism.” Noah Smith calls it a “new industrialism.” The Atlantic’s Derek Thompson and my colleague Eli Dourado call it “the abundance agenda.” At least for now, this vision offers the most realistic path to a sustainable future because it forces policies to be focused on constraints. There is only one means of reducing constraints, and it is through abundance.

Twitter Isn’t a Public Square. It’s a Coliseum – August 30, 2022 – Newsweek – Public squares have always been styled as places where the general public would gather to share and exchange ideas, discuss politics, and engage in debate. This is not what is happening online. Twitter is where our modern political teams—former presidents, journalists, advocates, politicians, and scholars—gather to engage in political skirmishes. It is where the politics of the chronically online are played out. Twitter especially is not a public square. It is a coliseum.

The attention economy: a history of the term, its economics, its value, and how it is changing politics – July 20, 2022 – Exformation Newsletter – This piece is probably my most comprehensive work on the attention economy. As the subtitle suggests, it reviews a history of the term, dives into the economics, and explains why the idea is important for political conversations today. Work your way to the end. I explain why TikTok users value the site by $5,600 per year and why the politics of attention explains Cambridge Analytica.

Total blackout – June 15, 2022 – The Benchmark – On October 4, 2021, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp were inaccessible for almost six hours due to a network configuration issue. Some might read this episode as a monopoly story, but a closer look reveals the subtle ways that platforms compete. More importantly, the blackout event undermines a key part of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) case against Meta that is making its way through the courts. Understanding where people went when Meta wasn’t available is critically important for understanding how competition works in practice.

FCC broadband data is biased – May 2, 2022 – For years, the FCC has struggled to estimate the true number of homes without broadband. This research uses a number of economic models to estimate the real extent of broadband availability in the US.

The story of Disney’s ‘Tomorrowland Problem’ and America’s Long Stagnation – May 2, 2022 – Faster, Please newsletter – In this post, I answer five questions on vetocracy, permitting, and stagnation for Faster, Please! paid subscribers.

The answer isn’t degrowth. The answer is abundance. – April 22, 2022 – The Benchmark – Rich societies can do a lot more for their citizens. They can spend more on healthcare, education, and work programs because they are collecting taxes from wealthier people. Wealthier societies can also spend more to mitigate the effects of climate change. Some have suggested that we need to completely stop growth to solve climate change. Not so. Only broad-based prosperity coupled with ingenuity will give us the tools necessary to solve the problems created by climate change. We need an abundance agenda.

To unleash progress, excessive vetoes need to be restrained – April 7, 2022 – Exformation Newsletter – Too many actors have veto rights over what gets built, slowing development and progress. We need to get serious about solving it. This is a companion piece to my work on vetocracy.

Vetocracy, the costs of vetos and inaction – March 24, 2022 – The Benchmark – Too many actors have veto rights over what gets built, slowing development and progress. Francis Fukuyama calls this an all too common tendency in institutions vetocracy. Vetocracy is related, but separate from the broader problem of red tape. Red tape, permitting, and other limitations regulate conduct. Instead, vetocracy is about the excessive accretion of voice that slows down normal processes. Of course, voice is important to a healthy democracy, but excessive vetoes mean that work slows.

As if we needed more evidence there’s a privacy-competition tradeoff – March 3, 2022 – Exformation Newsletter – Meta’s bad quarter underscores the disproportionality in digital markets, small changes on privacy can have outsized impacts on competition. This is a companion piece to my CGO publication, “The Facebook stock drop and the price of privacy.”

The Facebook stock drop and the price of privacy – February 24, 2022 – The Benchmark – Meta’s stock dropped massively in February. This one episode holds three lessons. First off, small changes in the default can have outsized impacts. Second, the privacy changes in 14.5 suggest that privacy laws might have an impact on competition legislation. And finally, TikTok is a rising player in the attention economy.


How much will each state receive in broadband funding from the $1T infrastructure bill? – November 18, 2021 – The Benchmark – Joe Biden just signed the \$1T infrastructure bill, the largest bill of its type since the Stimulus Package in 2009. Included within it is \$65 billion dedicated to broadband. Some of the \$65 billion will go to pay for Internet in low-income households. The vast majority of it, some \$42.45 billion, is headed to the states for broadband projects. Where exactly is that money going? This piece estimates how much each state will get according to the formula provided in the infrastructure bill.

Do social media platforms extract value from consumers? - November 15, 2021 – The Benchmark – It is a common trope that social media extracts value from their users as though they are minerals being mined by the Zuckerberg’s and Dorsey’s of the world. But for their own part, consumers value social media sites between \$3,800 and \$4,500 each year, depending on the platform. As such, they retain at least 96 percent of the total value of social media and upwards of 99 percent in some cases. In other words, users receive close to all the value in these products, leaving social media companies with the remaining 1 to 4 percent.

A progress report on the Emergency Broadband Benefit program - October 27, 2021 – The Benchmark – Late last year, Congress set aside \$3.14 billion to help low-income households pay for broadband service and connected Internet devices through the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) Program. Since Congress is likely to extend the program through the infrastructure bill, policymakers need to understand the full extent of the program’s impact. To this end, we are releasing a county-level dataset for researchers and leaders alike that will help everyone better understand the EBB program. As many had hoped, our analysis of these enrollments suggests they are going towards low income communities. See also my Exformation Newsletter on the topic.

This one simple regulation will solve every teen’s problems online - October 8, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

The just say no campaign was a good idea. It just should have been applied to social media and called tethics - August 27, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

Why Capitalists in Space Are Good for Americans’ Future - August 5, 2021 - Regulatory Transparency Project - Instead of dunking on billionaires, critics should take it as a chance to learn what has gone right in space policy recently and apply those lessons broadly. Smarter policy combined with American ingenuity is a recipe for success, both here on Earth and out in space.

There might be too much advertising, but not for the reasons you think - July 30, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

Instead of being eradicated, should mosquitoes be vaccinated? - July 21, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

The 15 hour workweek is a dream in search of economic roots - July 19, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

This house believes in science and so it believes in human challenge trials - July 13, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

Every way of seeing (like a platform) is also a way of not seeing - July 6, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

Should the FDA make aging a disease? - by Will Rinehart - Jun 28, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

“Bringing Dark Patterns to Light” FTC Workshop Public Comment - June 3, 2021 - Public interest comment - In these comments, we caution the Federal Trade Commission against expansively interpreting dark patterns. Since its origination in 2010, the idea of a dark pattern has blossomed across legal academia. Yet, relatively little has been done to separate proposed dark patterns from practices already regulated under well-established law. As our comments demonstrate, most dark patterns are merely modern renditions of practices already covered by long-standing laws against deception, fraud, and unfairness. Proposed dark patterns falling outside of this scope are few and far between.

Inequality in the attention economy has its benefits - June 14, 2021 - Exformation Newsletter

The digital divide, digital equity, and the nature of the problem - June 3, 2021 - The Benchmark - This post is the second in a series of four posts, which diagnoses the problem inherent in the digital divide. As policymakers consider measures to bridge this divide, it is essential to know that, unconnected individuals typically have low educational attainment, low income, are elderly or are disabled. Just as important, two-thirds of those not connected say that lack of interest is the primary reason for being offline.

Social Media and Misinformation - May 24, 2021 - Inside Sources - Some research suggests that misinformation boosts short-term engagement with platforms. But it is tough to compare platforms with and without misinformation in the wild. Moreover, users learn and change their preferences over time. With these concerns in mind, our economic lab set up an experimental game to test some key questions. The results undercut the notion that misinformation is good for the bottom line. Even our researchers were shocked. Much as Zuckerberg had suggested, social media platforms focused on user long-term engagement have a clear incentive to purge their platforms of misinformation.

Bill Nelson’s Flawed Vision for NASA - April 22, 2021 - National Review Online - Bill Nelson certainly comes with the right credentials to lead NASA. He has a long history overseeing the agency. He remains one of the few politicians ever to fly a Space Shuttle mission, and he has won glowing praise from all the right people, such as previous Administrator Bridenstine and Senator Rubio. But the biggest concern about Nelson is that he won’t push back against the worst excesses of Congress. For far too long, Congress has moved beyond mere goal-setting to dictate in legislative text what the agency should decide itself. We need a change.

An in-depth look at the broadband infrastructure bills - April 13, 2021 - The Benchmark - This post is the first in a series of four posts, which first explores the current infrastructure bills, diagnoses the problem inherent in the digital divide, explores broadband as an infrastructure problem, and finally lays out an algorithm for action in broadband.

Facebook’s “Dangerous Individuals and Organizations” Policy: A Comment to The Oversight Board - March 3, 2021 - The Benchmark - With the Facebook Oversight Board still in its infancy, the Board’s cases and its decisions could be seen by some as inconsequential. But contrary to this belief, the Board’s move to provide a decision on the Trump deplatforming case poses an existential risk of eliminating the Board’s “independence” and credibility.

Reinvigorating communities will take more than broadband - February 23, 2021 - The Benchmark - Contrary to popular belief, broadband expansions are not a cure all for sluggish economies.

How platforms broke antitrust analysis - February 19, 2021 - The Benchmark - Economists and antitrust scholars have been actively working on merging insights from the nascent platform literature into traditional antitrust analysis. This post offers a beginning point to that kind of assessment.

Water markets critical to managing scarcity - January 5, 2021 - The OCR - Many have decried the emergence of water markets because they are so repugnant. Water is a right, they claim. By claiming it is a right does not change the fact that it is still a scarce resource that has many different competing uses. Markets won’t solve droughts, but they do help farmers and cities to manage their repercussions.


Facebook’s “Dangerous Individuals and Organizations” Policy: A Comment to The Oversight Board - December 9, 2020 - Public Interest Comment - The comment focuses on four points that speak to broader processes at the Oversight Board as well as the particular issues within the particular case. First, the information provided to solicit public participation is insufficient to allow for meaningful discussion of the nuances surrounding the subject posts. Second, the “Dangerous Individuals and Organizations Policy” is too broad when applied to historical figures. Third, the Dangerous Individuals policy is inconsistently applied, rendering it ineffective and counterproductive. Fourth, retroactively applying the Dangerous Individuals policy to a “Memory” undermines Facebook’s credibility in content moderation.

Debunking the myths surrounding the COVID-19 vaccines - November 20, 2020 - The Benchmark - Cooperation among private and public sector actors, especially in times of crisis, is the key to solving critical problems.

What you should know about the Google antitrust case - November 4, 2020 - The Benchmark - An explanation of the DOJ’s motivation for bringing a case against Google, the gaps in it, and what’s next.

Are Government-Owned Broadband Networks Effective? – October 23, 2020 – The Center for Growth and Opportunity – In this research in focus piece, author Will Rinehart examines the existing research on the effectiveness of GONs in adding value to local communities. Rinehart begins by examining when it makes sense to build a new broadband network in the first place. He finds that the initial investments needed to establish a new broadband network can be sizable, especially in rural areas, and vary significantly depending on population density, local conditions, and regulatory requirements. Understanding exactly what kind of broadband service is in the highest demand is also essential to understanding a potential project’s feasibility.

The curious case of Romanian broadband – October 15, 2020 – The Benchmark – The success of Romanian broadband offers lessons for policymakers today.

Petition for Rulemaking regarding Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996 – September 21, 2020 – The CGO - Section 230 laid the foundation for today’s modern Internet. Tech companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter were able to scale, knowing that they won’t be second-guessed by courts if they were to take off spam or harassing content from their networks. Spam filters, parental blocking software, and every other service that curates Internet content would be fair game for lawsuits as well if Section 230 fundamentally changes.

Is data nonrivalrous? – September 14, 2020 – The Benchmark – For many firms, there is no scale effect with data. Many companies today aren’t even capable of incorporating insights from their own data, let alone another company. A more permissive data-sharing regime won’t do much to solve this endemic hurdle.

Tracing the impact of automation on workers and firms – August 14, 2020 – The Benchmark – Automation will be a slow process in many sectors. Instead, productivity data is uneven. Firms are reluctant to change, and only some industries seem to be affected by robotics or other automation methods.

Don’t Ban TikTok Before A Public Trial – August 12, 2020 – Op-ed in The Daily Caller – At a gut-level, the move by the White House feels satisfying. Finally, the president is doing something to curb Chinese overtures on the Internet. But the ban does little to push back on the actual rights violations by the Chinese government. Instead, the president should be more forceful in calling out China for surveilling and oppressing Uighurs, while also showing more support for protesters in Hong Kong that are crying out for democracy and freedom.

What can we expect at the tech antitrust hearing, an FAQ – July 29, 2020 – The Benchmark – The House antitrust hearing will vary dramatically in the key questions and policy remedies posed to each company. This FAQ helps cut through the noise.

Consumers value Facebook to the tune of \$1 trillion a year – July 16, 2020 – The Benchmark – Using the economic concept of the shadow price, I estimate the value of social media to consumers, which totals just under a trillion each year.

A dangerous game – June 3, 2020 – The Benchmark – In an effort to punish Twitter for fact-checking him, President Trump signed an executive order that could mean more of his content around the Internet is taken down in the future. It may have scored political points, but it comes at the expense of a bright spot of the U.S. economy, which would be exposed to greater liability.

The Apple Google API is a supplement to manual tracing, not a substitute – May 21, 2020 – The Benchmark – The API has faced a spat of criticism. Some deride it as being ineffectual, while others have serious concerns about the system’s implications for privacy. Yet, the Exposure Notification API should be understood on its own terms. Digital contact systems are only a supplement to existing manual tracing efforts; they are not a substitute.

There Aren’t Luddites in a Quarantine – April 28, 2020 – Truth on the Market – This piece is part of a blog series by TOTM guests and authors on the law, economics, and policy of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Did an 8-year-old merger cause today’s ventilator shortage? – April 10, 2020 – The Benchmark – Given the facts, it is hard to claim this was a killer acquisition. The more likely story is that the federal government tried to low-ball a project, got a bite from Newport, and that project ultimately failed when Newport realized they were taking a loss on every single product.

Regulatory uncertainty made COVID responses difficult – April 6, 2020 – The Benchmark – While testing has expanded massively in recent weeks, the confusion throughout February caused a holdup, an expected outcome of regulatory uncertainty. The cumulative effect led to a further spreading of the disease that could have been prevented.

Changing antitrust rules will cause confusion – March 21, 2020 – The Hill – We should wait until the big tech investigations have run their course before changing the antitrust regime.

Welcome to the kill zone? – February 27, 2020 – The Benchmark – The vast majority of acquisitions aren’t to stop competitors, but to buy innovative ideas and talent, which has the end effect of being pro-consumer. Policymakers, as well as leadership at the FTC and the DOJ, are justified in taking a closer look at the impact of large firms on innovation. Still, the evidence of a kill zone in the tech industry is thin.

We should be tackling disinformation – February 6, 2020 – The Benchmark – The end result of Warren’s plan wouldn’t be a reduction of disinformation, but a reduction of all kinds of political speech, including her own.


Breaking Down Sanders’ Broadband Plan – December 19, 2019 – American Action Forum

Hearing on Data Ownership: Exploring Implications for Data Privacy Rights and Data Valuation – October 24, 2019 – Testimony Before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs

The Entrepreneurial State, Some Brief Comments – October 16, 2019 – Tech Liberation Front

What is C-Band? – October 16, 2019 – American Action Forum

Analyzing Plans To Reallocate C-Band for 5G Deployment – October 7, 2019 – American Action Forum

How Do You Value Data? A Reply To Jaron Lanier’s Op-Ed In The NYT – September 23, 2019 – Tech Liberation Front

Will the Antitrust Investigation into Google Benefit Consumers? – September 18, 2019 – American Action Forum

The AAF Exchange Ep. 10: Rural Broadband – September 3, 2019 – American Action Forum

Corporations Aren’t the Problem with Broadband Access – September 3, 2019 – American Action Forum

Would A Federal Broadband Program Help Rural Areas? – August 15, 2019 – American Action Forum

Fallout from the Facebook Fine – August 6, 2019 – American Action Forum

Breaking up Facebook Would Be a Technical and Organizational Nightmare — and Would Almost Certainly Harm Consumers – July 24, 2019 – Truth on the Market

There are good reasons to be skeptical that automation will unravel the labor market – July 8, 2019 – Tech Liberation Front

Understanding Job Loss Predictions From Artificial Intelligence – July 11, 2019 – American Action Forum

The Precedents for Forcing Neutrality on Tech Platforms – June 21, 2019 – American Action Forum

Comments for the Department of Justice’s Competition in Television and Digital Advertising Workshop – June 17, 2019 – American Action Forum

Reviving the Office of Technology Assessment would require a set of specific conditions in Congress. We have simply not arrived at that time. – June 15, 2019 – Tech Liberation Front

The Political Economy of Expertise – June 14, 2019 – Cato Unbound

What Is Being Done to Combat Robocalls? – June 5, 2019 – American Action Forum

The Risk-Free Rate of Social Media – May 2, 2019 – Medium

What Silicon Valley Doesn’t Understand About Washington, DC (From An Insider) – April 16, 2019 – Medium

DETOUR Act Gives Sweeping Powers to FTC – April 15, 2019 – American Action Forum

The Anti-Coherence of American Surveillance – April 15, 2019 – Medium

Net neutrality debate is really about the ballooning regulatory state – April 12, 2019 – Washington Examiner

The Macroeconomics of China’s Social Credit System – April 12, 2019 – Medium

A Dive Into Digital Dividends – April 2, 2019 – American Action Forum

Beware Beto’s Siren Song of Rural Broadband – March 26, 2019 – RealClearPolicy

Approaches to Regulating Technology: From Privacy to A.I. (editor) – March 15, 2019 – American Action Forum

Four Reasons Why Senator Warren’s Public Utility Proposal Will Backfire – March 12, 2019 – American Action Forum

An Esoteric Reading of LM Sacasas – February 26, 2019 – The Technology Liberation Front

Jordan Peterson’s Missing Rhetoric: A Reaction To The Recent Tyler Cowen Interview – February 15, 2019 – Medium

Signaling and supply chains in the Chinese startup scene – January 28, 2019 – Medium

The Kids Are Going To Be Alright – January 17, 2019 – The Technology Liberation Front

Understanding The ADD Act – January 17, 2019 – American Action Forum

Primer: How To Understand And Approach AI Regulation – January 10, 2019 – American Action Forum

An AI Innovation Agenda – January 10, 2019 – American Action Forum


If you’re worried about net neutrality, put your reputation on the line and make a prediction about the future – December 17, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Smarter Together, to What Ends? A Review of AIQ – December 14, 2018 – Prototype

Three Short Responses To The Pacing Problem – November 27, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

NTIA Comments on Developing the Administration’s Approach to Consumer Privacy – November 8, 2018 – American Action Forum

Opt-In Mandates Shouldn’t Be Included In Privacy Laws – November 8, 2018 – American Action Forum

Book Review: Cathy O’Neil’s “Weapons of Math Destruction” – November 7, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Is There a Kill Zone in Tech? – November 7, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Should The New NPR Poll On Rural America Make You Reconsider Your View of Rural Broadband Development? – October 17, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

In Defense of Techno-optimism – October 10, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

The Government Should Not Ban Mergers And Buyouts – October 4, 2018 – American Action Forum

Should the US Adopt the GDPR? – October 1, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

The Options For The Future Of The International Space Station – September 25, 2018 – American Action Forum

Comments on the transfer of control of Sprint Corporation to T-Mobile – September 16, 2018 – FCC Commentary

The T-Mobile-Sprint Merger And False Market Distinctions – September 16, 2018 – American Action Forum

Broadband e-Connectivity Pilot Program Comments – September 10, 2018 – Submission

Is Facebook Now Over-moderating Content? – September 10, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Practical Problems with Regulating Tech in the Public Interest – August 30, 2018 – Prototype

The Lasting Legacy of the Amazon-Whole Foods Merger Will Likely Be the Spread of Grocery Tech – August 28, 2018 – Truth On The Market

Big Data Hubris – August 20, 2018 – Comments for the FTC’s Hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection

Platform Competition And The Implications Of Amex – August 20, 2018 – Comments for the FTC’s Hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection

Algorithmic Regulation And Consumer Welfare – August 20, 2018 – Comments for the FTC’s Hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection

A Look At Rural Broadband Economics – August 14, 2018 – American Action Forum

The Folly Of Compulsory Licensing – August 10, 2018 – Weekly Checkup

How Should Privacy Be Defined? A Roadmap – August 6, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

The Definition of Technology Matters For Tech Policy And Growth – August 6, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Why Did The Facebook Stock Drop Last Week? Some Economics Of Decision-making – July 31, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

The Competition Debate: Is Big Tech Good for America? – July 27, 2018 – IGF-USA

Breaking Up Big Tech Is Hard to Do – July 22, 2018 – Wall Street Journal

Breaking Up Tech Companies Means Breaking Up Teams And The Underlying Technology – July 23, 2018 – American Action Forum

The Online Public Sphere or: Facebook, Google, Reddit, and Twitter also support positive communities – July 11, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Did The Supreme Court Get The Market Definition Correct In The Amex Case? – July 6, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

What is 5G and how do we get there? – June 28, 2018 – American Consumer Institute Panel Russel Senate Office Building

A History Of Failure: Government-Imposed Corporate Breakups – June 27, 2018 – American Action Forum

Mandating AI Fairness May Come At The Expense Of Other Types of Fairness – June 21, 2018 – The Technology Liberation Front

Is Internet Access a Right? – June 14, 2018 – Liberal Currents

The AT&T-Time Warner Decision – June 13, 2018 – American Action Forum

Making Sense of the 2017 Contingent Worker Survey – June 7, 2018 – American Action Forum

Explaining The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation – May 22, 2018 – American Action Forum

Here’s How to Regulate Facebook Productively! – May 15, 2018 – The Bridge Podcast

The Congressional Review Act Might Not Fully Restore Net Neutrality, Leaving It A Zombie Regulation – April 19, 2018 – American Action Forum

The Law & Economics of “Owning Your Data” – April 10, 2018 – American Action Forum

Will Rinehart Explains the Cambridge Analytica Story – March 27, 2018 – HighTech Forum

Answering the Three Big Questions Surrounding Cambridge Analytica – March 21, 2018 – Medium

Maybe the fake news problem was always there, but only now it’s coming into the light – March 14, 2018 – Medium

The Perils of the Subscription Model – March 12, 2018 – Medium

Did the Microsoft Antitrust Case Pave the Way for the Tech Revolution? – February 28, 2018 – American Action Forum

Illiberal Reformers of Speech – February 26, 2018 – Liberal Currents

What’s In The Infrastructure Plan For Broadband? – February 22, 2018 – American Action Forum

Did Fake News Tip The Election? A Research Redux – February 21, 2018 – Medium

Why A Data Portability Act Might Not Be An Effective Policy Path – February 6, 2018 – American Action Forum

The Right Legislation For Net Neutrality – January 24, 2018 – American Action Forum

The Reactions To Facebook’s Changes Highlight The Privileged Status of News – January 19, 2018 – Medium

Full Steam Ahead on The FCC’s Office of Economics and Analytics – January 17, 2018 – American Action Forum

Proposed Antitrust Legislation Would Be A Radical Departure – January 5, 2018 – American Action Forum

Technologies of Freedom – January 3, 2018 – Cato Unbound


Democracy as an Essentially Contested Concept – December 21, 2017 – Cato Unbound

Five Questions To Ask About The Network Neutrality Rule Change – December 14, 2017 – American Action Forum

Fake News and Our Real Problems – December 5, 2017 – Cato Unbound

Community Broadband Bits Episode 281 – December 4, 2017 – Community Broadband Networks Podcast

Understanding the Impact of Algorithms Requires Social Significance, Not Simply Statistical Significance – December 4, 2017 – Workshop on Trustworthy Algorithmic Decision-Making

Episode 3: Algorithms, Justice and Will Rinehart – November 27, 2017 – Internet Law & Policy Foundry Podcast

Eliminating Burdensome Media Ownership Rules Will Help Outlets Adapt To The Digital World – November 15, 2017 – American Action Forum

Should We Care About The Size of Firms? Charting the Connections Between Productivity, Entrepreneurism, and Big Business – November 2, 2017 – American Action Forum

The \$40 Billion Broadband Plan That Misses the Mark – November 2, 2017 – American Action Forum

How Much Do Uber Drivers Make? From \$2 Per Hour to \$472 Per Hour – October 27, 2017 – American Action Forum

The Social Graph Portability Act Doesn’t Take Tech Seriously, and That’s Worrying – October 13, 2017 – Medium

Where Economists and Data Scientists Diverge – October 10, 2017 – Medium

Who is to Blame for Algorithmic Outrage? – September 21, 2017 – Medium

The Future of Speech Online – September 15, 2017 – Event with the Center for Democracy & Technology, the Charles Koch Institute, and the Newseum Institute

The Election of 2016 and the Filter Bubble Thesis in 2017 – September 15, 2017 – Medium

The Rhetoric of Technopanics And Why It Matters – September 15, 2017 – Medium

The Title II Order Is Costly and Ineffective, It Should Be Repealed – August 30, 2017 – FCC Restoring Internet Freedom Filing

Rural Broadband Redux, What We Know – August 22, 2017 – American Action Forum

Capitol Hill Briefing: The Role of Modern Infrastructure in U.S. Entrepreneurship and Small Business Growth – August 10, 2017 – Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council

This is why most criticism of risk assessment models is mistaken – July 25, 2017 – Medium

Why Is The Broadband Infrastructure Debate Dominated By Supply-Siders? – June 21, 2017 – Medium

The BROWSER Act Explained – June 14, 2017 – American Action Forum

Broadband Subsidies Totaled \$8.2 Billion Last Year – June 1, 2017 – American Action Forum

Four Missing Pieces To The John Oliver Bit On Net Neutrality – May 12, 2017 – American Action Forum

FCC Data Suggests Broadband Inequality Has Decreased – May 11, 2017 – American Action Forum

Is Cost Really Stopping Consumers From Getting Broadband? – May 10, 2017 – American Action Forum

Keeping the Internet Open and Free Doesn’t Mean Title II – April 26, 2017 – American Action Forum

Testimony to the Council of the District of Columbia on Bill 22-92 – April 26, 2017 – American Action Forum

Why More Government Owned Broadband Networks Aren’t Being Built – April 13, 2017 – American Action Forum

Five Myths Of The Broadband Privacy CRA – April 4, 2017 – American Action Forum

R&D Funding In The First Year Of Trump’s Administration – March 29, 2017 – American Action Forum

How Well Do Rural Broadband Subsidies Work? – March 1, 2017 – American Action Forum

Is The Lifeline Subsidy An Effective Program? – February 28, 2017 – American Action Forum

FCC Chairman Wheeler By The Numbers – February 8, 2017 – American Action Forum

The Real Question Behind Zero-Rating: Who Should Pay? – February 7, 2017 – Medium

Was There Really A Fake News Epidemic? Three Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Rely On The Buzzfeed Analysis Of Fake News – January 31, 2017 – Medium

The Enchantment of Code and the Rise of Technoanimism – January 18, 2017 – Medium

What Ever Happened to Slacktivism? – January 12, 2017 – Soapbox DC

Washington should harness the power of the gig economy – January 10, 2017 – The Hill

The Gig Economy: Research and Policy Implications of Regional, Economic, and Demographic Trends – January 10, 2017 – The Aspen Institute

The Early History of the FCC Doesn’t Provide a Basis for Regulating Facebook and Google Now – January 10, 2017 – Medium

What The FCC Left Out From Its Zero-Rating Analysis – January 4, 2017 – American Action Forum


Did Echo Chambers and Fake News Really Tip the Election? – December 02, 2016 – Real Clear Future

Six Questions Policymakers Should Ask About the Gig Economy – November 17, 2016 – American Action Forum

Why the LabMD Case Matters for the Regulation of Privacy – November 16, 2016 – American Action Forum

What’s Missing From the White House’s Reports on AI? A Balanced Take on Entrepreneurism – November 10, 2016 – American Action Forum

If I never again heard about the trolley problem applied to autonomous vehicles, I would be excessively happy – November 2, 2016 – Medium

New York’s Short Term Rental Ban Only Limits Opportunities – October 26, 2016 – American Action Forum

An Innovation Agenda For 2017 – October 13, 2016 – American Action Forum

Primer: Why Algorithms Are Important to Public Policy – October 5, 2016 – American Action Forum

We Are All Cyberlibertarians: An Exploration of Technological Determinism and Cyberlibertarianism – September 7, 2016 – Tech Policy Corner

The FCC’s Media Ownership Order is a Retreat from Congressional Mandate – August 29, 2016 – American Action Forum

Are Google Ads Really Gender Biased? – August 29, 2016 – Medium

FCC’s Overreach on Government Run Networks Gets Rebuke From Court – August 16, 2016 – American Action Forum

What Will Brexit Mean for US Tech And Digital Trade? – July 26, 2016 – American Action Forum

Which Policies Will Foster the Growth of Artificial Intelligence? – July 22, 2016 – American Action Forum

New York Law Would Wipe Half a Billion Dollars of Value for Airbnb Hosts – July 21, 2016 – American Action Forum

A \$281 Billion Recycled Technology & Innovation Plan – June 30, 2016 – American Action Forum

No Congress Didn’t Give the FCC a Broad Mandate to Regulate Privacy – June 23, 2016 – American Action Forum

Court Finds Network Neutrality Rules Both Legal And Bad Policy – June 21, 2016 – American Action Forum

How Workers are Benefiting in the Online Gig Economy – June 1, 2016 – American Action Forum

Everything You Need To Know About Spectrum: A Primer – June 9, 2016 – American Action Forum

Proposed FCC Privacy Rules Would Harm Innovation – June 7, 2016 – American Action Forum

What Exactly Constitutes A Privacy Harm? – June 1, 2016 – American Action Forum

Four More Things We Know About Fixed And Mobile Broadband Competition – May 24, 2016 – American Action Forum

Four Things We Know About Fixed And Mobile Broadband Competition – May 17, 2016 – American Action Forum

Is Facebook Suppressing Conservative News? Some Context and Questions to all the Innuendo – May 12, 2016 – Soapbox DC

Merger Agreement Spotlights FCC’s Turn Away From Innovation – April 28, 2016 – American Action Forum

Five Things We Know About The “Filter Bubble Thesis” – April 27, 2016 – Medium

Throw Back Thursday: When The FCC Used To Be Independent – April 21, 2016 – American Action Forum

The White House Gets Involved in the FCC, An Independent Agency, Yet Again – April 21, 2016 – Medium

An Explanation Of The Newly Proposed FCC Privacy Rules – April 19, 2016 – American Action Forum

As Election Season Heats Up, Remember This Chart – April 15, 2016 – Medium

Why Netflix’s Recent Admission Matters For The Open Internet Debate – March 31, 2016 – American Action Forum

A Brief Overview Of The Upcoming Spectrum Auction And The Repacking Problems – March 24, 2016 – American Action Forum

Primer: The Basics Of Special Access – March 22, 2016 – American Action Forum

What’s Missing From Lifeline Reforms – March 18, 2016 – American Action Forum

Yet Another Unprovable Theory About Trump’s Political Rise – March 17, 2016 – Soapbox DC

20 Years Later, The FCC Still Needs To Align With Competition – March 9, 2016 – American Action Forum


Five Reforms To Modernize The Lifeline Subsidy Program – December 7, 2015 – American Action Forum

The Modern Online Gig Economy, Consumer Benefit, and the Importance of Regulatory Humility – November 19, 2015 – American Action Forum

The Broad Implications of the Newly Invalid US-EU Data Pact – October 7, 2015 – American Action Forum

Lifting The Ban On Internet Taxes Can Cost Consumers \$16.4 Billion – September 30, 2015 – American Action Forum

Funding Increases in Basic Research Illuminate Changing Nature of Innovation – September 24, 2015 – American Action Forum

In the Online Gig Economy, Policymakers Should Empower Workers – August 11, 2015 – American Action Forum

What If Stalin Had Computers? Well, He Would Still Need Human Action – August 25, 2015 – Medium

The Algorithmic Filtering Debate Desperately Needs More Nuance – August 24, 2015 – Medium

Five Charts to Reveal the Real Digital Divide – August 6, 2015 – American Action Forum

Why The Announcements from Google and Facebook Matter for US ISPs – August 5, 2015 – Medium

Independent Contractors and the Emerging Gig Economy – July 29, 2015 – American Action Forum

Policy Concerns of LTE in Unlicensed Spectrum – June 26, 2015 – American Action Forum

The FCC Shouldn’t Expand Spectrum Reserves – June 18, 2015 – American Action Forum

Charter/TWC Relevant Market Analysis – June 17, 2015 – American Action Forum

FCC Proposes Changes to Lifeline – June 9, 2015 – American Action Forum

Student Data Privacy: 5 Rules to Follow – June 4, 2015 – American Action Forum

John Deere’s Copyright Issues – May 26, 2015 – American Action Forum

The Real History of Title II and Investment – May 20, 2015 – American Action Forum

Uber and the Economics of Discrimination – May 20, 2015 – On-Demand

Recent Developments in Patent Policy – April 21, 2015 – American Action Forum

Small Businesses Bear the Brunt of Network Neutrality Rules – March 24, 2015 – American Action Forum

What is Driving the New Wifi First Cellular Services? – March 13, 2015 – Medium

Muni Projects Up To 50 Percent More Expensive for Consumers – March 5, 2015 – American Action Forum

Title II Reclassification is a Bad Software Patch – February 12, 2015 – American Action Forum

The President’s Plans for Technology and Innovation in FY 2016 – February 2, 2015 – American Action Forum

The FCC Changes the Definition of Broadband – February 2, 2015 – American Action Forum

Title II Reclassification Negatively Impacts Jobs and Investment – January 14, 2015 – American Action Forum


Primer: Network Neutrality and Title II – December 11, 2014 – American Action Forum

Title II Reclassification Explained – November 24, 2014 – American Action Forum

Did a Change in Rhetoric Give Rise to Cities? – November 20, 2014 - Sweet Talk Conversation

Net Neutrality and Reclassification Make American Broadband Consumers the Real Losers – November 17, 2014 – CNS News

A Look Inside The Complicated FCC Transaction Review Process – October 31, 2014 – American Action Forum

The Economics of Ello’s Manifesto – October 15, 2014 – Medium

The Cost of an Internet Access Tax – October 8, 2014 – American Action Forum

Reply Comments on the Comcast-Time Warner Cable Merger – September 24, 2014 – American Action Forum

Taking Chairman Wheeler’s Broadband Competition Challenge Seriously – September 5, 2014 – American Action Forum

NFL Blackout Rule Has Run Its Course – September 4, 2014 – American Action Forum

The Daily Dish – August 26, 2014 – American Action Forum

Comments to the FCC on the Comcast-Time Warner Cable Merger – August 25, 2014 – American Action Forum

STELA Reauthorization Highlights Need for Video Reform – August 5, 2014 – American Action Forum

Intellectual Property Underpinnings of Pharmaceutical Innovation: A Primer – July 29, 2014 – American Action Forum

Comments to the FCC on Net Neutrality and Title II Reclassification – July 17, 2014 – American Action Forum

How to Think About Modern Media Mergers – June 20, 2014 – American Action Forum

A Framework to Reform FCC Competition Policy – June 13, 2014 – American Action Forum

Principles to Rationalize Spectrum Policy – May 1, 2014 – American Action Forum

The Daily Dish – April 28, 2014 – American Action Forum

The Daily Dish – April 10, 2014 – American Action Forum

What is Network Neutrality – April 7, 2014 – American Action Forum

Guidelines & Questions to Frame the Network Neutrality Proceedings – March 21, 2014 – American Action Forum

What Does Netflix’s Strong Net Neutrality Actually Achieve? – March 21, 2014 – American Action Forum

President Obama’s Take on Technology and Innovation in the FY 2015 Budget – March 4, 2014 – American Action Forum

Comcast-Time Warner Cable: An Overview of the Relevant Markets – February 19, 2014 – American Action Forum

New Net Neutrality Bill Drops, Concerns Still Linger – February 7, 2014 – American Action Forum

Network Neutrality Decision a Mixed Bag for Consumers – January 14, 2014 – American Action Forum


Reply Comments In the Matter of Modernizing the E-rate Program for Schools and Libraries – November 7, 2013 – TechFreedom & The International Center for Law & Economics –

The Law and Economics of the FCC’s Transaction Review Process – August 23, 2013 – TPRC 41: The 41st Research Conference on Communication, Information and Internet Policy

The Market Realities that Undermined the FTC’s Antitrust Case Against Google – July, 2013 – Harvard Journal of Law & Technology

To what standard of free speech should we hold Twitter? – June 5, 2013 – The Commentator (UK)

The internet, like the press, works best when left alone – May 20, 2013 – The Commentator (UK)

Balancing innovation with data protection – May 7, 2013 – The Commentator (UK)

CISPA fight reveals political split in Internet policy battles – April 23, 2013 – The Commentator (UK)

Regulators should keep their hands off 4G – April 7, 2013 – The Commentator (UK)

Does cable really have a 97% profit margin? – February 15, 2013 – The Daily Caller

E-Books and the Boundaries of Antitrust – September 3, 2012 – Concurrences, No. 3-2012