Technology, Regulation, Capitalism, and Innovation

An interesting and very dynamic presentation from venture capitalist Bill Gurley on the topic of regulatory capture.

Cases that he discusses include municipal wi-fi projects, electronic medical records systems, and Covid testing.

In response to Bill’s presentation, Sophie @netcapgirl says:

it’s lowkey a shame because the origins of the digital era are rooted in a collaborative environment between government & industry (and academia) that are hard to imagine today. for instance, JC Licklider (instrumental in the computer revolution) held positions at ARPA, MIT & IBM

They’re both right, IMO–Bill is correct about malign impact of regulatory capture on innovation, and Sophie is correct about the historical importance of government involvement in digital innovation.

So what conclusions should we derive from this polarity?