In the days preceding the early 1980s, AT&T held a solid monopoly over American telephone communication. So strong was the monopoly that it was considered nothing less than natural for every phone service to belong to AT&T. The company came to be known as Ma Bell as an expression of its dominance over the country’s telephone based communication services (Flat World Knowledge, 2009). This was because of the fact that not only was the company dominant with regard to local communication but also in the areas of long distance and provincial telephone communication. It was the Justice Department that began to work to break this monopoly around the mid 1980s and this eventually led to the complete annihilation of the AT&T monopoly.
As a result of the breaking up of AT&T’s monopolistic hold, AT&T lost its dominance over local telephone communication and remained prevailing in only long range telephone communication services. However, it lost its reign over long range communication services as well when technology began to compel AT&T users to opt for cheaper and more technologically viable and sophisticated options (Flat World Knowledge, 2009). Innovations such as the introduction of cable television and allowed for the development of regional markets with each market harboring its own competitive players.
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