Silicon Flatiron Conference Encourages Internet Innovation

February 16, 2010

The Silicon Flatiron Center’s conference “The Digital Broadband Migration: Examining the Internet’s Ecosystem” was held on January 31- February 1. The 10th Annual event focused on three topics:The Internet’s market structure and the need for innovationThe governance challenges for the interconnected Internet service and content providersThe various structures for content providers trying to keep their businesses afloat.Phil Weiser, Colorado Law professor and U.S. Deputy Assistant Attorney General, kicked off the event with a speech emphasizing and explaining the conferences three foci. He said, “There are a number of critical factors that explain and continue to fuel the U.S. entrepreneurial engines. One of those critical factors, he said, is “our strength in three industries that are facilitating innovation at a greater pace than ever before: the computer, the mobile phone, and the Internet.”Professor Weiser emphasized that a major challenge facing the continuing innovations in these industries is continuing discussion between start-ups and entrenched companies. He believes this continued discussion will be important to prevent the established firms from interfering with new technologies.Elaborating on these themes, the conference attendees heard from noteworthy speakers and panelists, including Former Federal Communication Commission chairman Michael Powell, Disney Executive Preston Padden, and D.C. Court of Appeals Senior Judge Stephen Williams. Panelists and keynote speakers discussed a range of topics, including “Industry Structure and Opportunities for Innovation,” “Evolving Business Models,” and “The Governance Challenges of Cooperation in the Internet Ecosystem.”Read a complete summary of the Digital Broadband Migration Conference. For video feeds from the conference, see the live-streamed footage of the conference.