Giant corporations don’t compete, they buy and consolidate, so that they control entire markets while seeming to be open to individual enterprise. In fact, they benefit greatly from people’s eagerness to provide content for nothing. These corporations don’t create, they control the means of distribution, and creators exhaust themselves in competing for a chance to get their chickens to market or their books to readers. Entrepreneurs are free to work their hearts out, but, with few alternatives for distribution, it all begins to look like a brutal mashup of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle and Suzanne Collins’s The Hunger Games.
The linked article is a discussion of another piece in Harper's entitled "Killing the Competition: How the New Monopolies are Destroying Open Markets". Specifically, it talks about the way Amazon's stranglehold on the book industry has created a competition bottleneck, and is causing everyone who's not Amazon to war with each other in ways that are even more cutthroat and bloodthirsty than before.
-- Serdar Yegulalp