A secret history of the industrial wars behind the rise and fall of the twentieth century's great information empires - Hollywood, the broadcast networks, and AT&T - asking one big question: Could history repeat itself, with one giant entity taking control of American information?
Most consider the Internet Age to be a moment of unprecedented freedom in communications and culture. But as Tim Wu shows, each major new medium, from telephone to cable, arrived on a similar wave of idealistic optimism only to become, eventually, the object of industrial consolidation profoundly affecting how Americans communicate. Every once free and open technology was in time centralized and closed, a huge corporate power taking control of the master switch. Today, as a similar struggle looms over the Internet, increasingly the pipeline of all other media, the stakes have never been higher. To be decided: who gets heard, and what kind of country we live in.
Part industrial exposé, part meditation on the nature of freedom of expression, part battle cry to save the Internets best features, The Master Switch brings to light a crucial drama--rife with indelible characters and stories--heretofore played out over decades in the shadows of our national life.
Click to the right or left of the sample to turn the page.
(If no book jacket appears in a few seconds, then we don't have an excerpt of this book or your browser is unable to display it)
"Starred Review. Wu' s engaging narrative and remarkable historical detail make this a compelling and galvanizing cry for sanity - and necessary deregulation - in the information age." - Publishers Weekly
"Readers should be knowledgeable about the theories of important economists, such as Joseph Schumpeter, and have an economic background in the characteristics of corporate structures, such as monopolies and oligopolies, to make the best use of this book." - Library Journal
"Starred Review. Wu artfully charts a single story in which economic power consistently trumps public good, with the Google of today being the latest master switch that channels communication .Eye-opening reading, with implications for just about anyone who uses that utility, which means just about everyone." - Kirkus Reviews
"[A] brilliant exploration of the oscillations of communications technologies between open and closed from the early days of telephone up through Hollywood and broadcast television up to the Internet era." - Forbes
The information about The Master Switch shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.
The Kopp Sisters Return!
One of the nation's first female deputy sheriffs returns in another gripping adventure based on fact.
Solve this clue:
and be entered to win..
Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.
Your guide toexceptional books
BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.