Crawford compares the debate between the telcos and the online companies over broadband access regimes often called the "network neutrality" debate to the ongoing tussle between intellectual property maximalists and "free culture" advocates which are strikingly parallel sets of arguments. The maximalists claim that creativity comes from lone genuises (the romantic author) who must be given legal incentives to works but intellectual property scholars have carefully examined the incentives of their arguments and have pointed out that granting overly strong property rights to copyright holders might not be socially appropriate. Moreover, the network providers claim that they (the romantic builders) must be allowed by law to price-discriminate vis-a-vis content sources in order to be encouraged to build the network.

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