Of course they had the advantage, I never said they didn’t have an advantage, they have an advantage like google has an advantage or verizon has an advantage or even microsoft has an advantage.
Your point was that the phone company had a monopoly, they didn’t in regards to phone books and they certainly didn’t in terms of advertising. In order to build a business you didn’t have to have an ad in the phone book, in fact many people built a business simply off of word of mouth, or maybe they used billboards or radio or tv.
Your point is it’s extortion which is worse a lie and at best naive. The advertising market in any city was simply run off of supply and demand like anything. If people decided to use a 3rd party publisher balking at their own telephone company 3rd party rates would have been driven higher.
So point by point.
1st the monopolies were closing looked at for their phone rates just like utility companies are. Publishing phone books was a cost like any other that was viewed independently of phone lines themselves.
2nd Just because a line was activated at the company didn’t give them a distinct advantage on advertising because the company didn’t have to pay the rates they were asking for. If a new business felt like they HAD to advertise in order to bring in customers they had many media types are their disposal. Also, all companies including the home phone company had outside reps that would go and visit new businesses, an expense shared by all.
3rd Now you are just casting stones, Yellow book was a successful company all on it’s own, many phone companies did overlap for example Verizon overlapped with Qwest(Centurylink) to compete for the same area. A 3rd party publisher didn’t have to be a small company, in fact some were large phone companies that reached out beyond their phone subscriber base. The home base phone book was always the most popular but not the only one used.
Whatever. Seriously, you are being obstinate or you simply cannot understand simple math. I give up. You will never get it, not in a million years, not with pictures, not with charts, I would sooner get a raccoon to do calculus.
Cash cow monopolies in no way effect the competitive advantage of closely tied business concerns in your world and nothing is ever going to penetrate that world.