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Introduction : Introduction
The theme of this part is political economy in its broadest sense. The chapters trace developments in a number of industries, all of which have paved the way for the growth of the new media sector. They also cover trade issues, how economists have handled the concept of information economics, and the ultimately important social question of universal access to the new information and communications technologies (ICTs).
The opening chapter from Pablo Boczkowski provides a cameo history of online newspapers, one of the earliest manifestations of new media. The faltering history of these endeavours illustrates the problems of an industry trying to anticipate both the opportunities and the threats arising from new electronic communications technologies, a history punctuated by false starts and misread opportunities. For ...