Quoting wikipedia:MSimon wrote:It is only rent seeking when the government makes you buy.
In economics, rent seeking occurs when an individual, organization or firm seeks to make money by manipulating the economic and/or legal environment rather than by trade and production of wealth. The term comes from the notion of economic rent, but in modern use of the term, rent seeking is more often associated with government regulation and misuse of governmental authority than with land rents as defined by David Ricardo.
Rent seeking is any non-positive-sum game to internalize positive externalities (public benefits). The classic private sector rent-seeking example is the increment of land value enjoyed by speculators due to the nearby infrastructure investment of others. The flip-side is pollution, which externalizes costs. In both cases, libertarian theory is that these these public effects can be internalized in a jurisdiction through a functional justice system. This is a grand goal to strive for but in the mean time, we have things like Gates and PCBs.MSimon wrote:As long as you haver a choice it is not rent seeking.
Gates clearly internalized the positive externality of the network effect of a standard PC architecture and Gates himself stated publicly that there was not room for more than one OS in the PC market -- non-positive-sum.