For many years, Britannica was regarded as the standard reference encyclopedia Its 32- volume set was sold at $1,600 in as recent as in early 1990s In 1992, however, Microsoft entered the business by acquiring the rights to Funk & Wagnall and using its content to have a CD encyclopedia called Encarta The initial list price for Encarta was $4995, and the actual price was much lower for computer manufacturers who included Encarta in the computers they sold Britannica saw its market eroded, with sales in 1996 being reduced to half of that in 1990 In 1996, a CD edition of Britannica was offered at $200 By October 15, 2001, the list price for the CD edition of Britannica was $4995, and that of Britannica’s 32-volume was $1,295 Meanwhile, Encarta 2002 version is available at $7495 (“Information Rules”, Carl Shapiro and Hal Varian, Harvard Business School Press, 1999)

a Are the Britannica on paper and the Britannica on CD close substitutes? What about the Britannica on CD and the Encarta on CD?

b What would you have done differently if you were at the helm of Britannica?

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