Showing 7 results for:


by Topic

All results

U.S. Retail Giants Call On The FTC To Change How It Enforces Antitrust Laws To Better Regulate Big Tech

Over time, some tech companies have grown to a massive size, posing antitrust concerns. Now, some of the country’s retail giants are asking the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to open up an antitrust investigation into Amazon and Google. In a letter dated June 30 , the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) — including companies like Best Buy, Target, and Walmart — wrote to the FTC. Within the letter, the companies focused on one unique aspect: the role that information and data plays. “Our view is that modern antitrust enforcement needs to be driven by a greater recognition that control over information can drive anticompetitive effect just as much as market power and price control,” the RILA wrote. The United States has struggled with managing its big tech companies for some time. Part of the struggle is that these companies have a global reach that people are still trying to understand. However, that’s not an excuse for regulatory practices to not exist —especially at home....

Jul 5, 2019

A Group Of States Want To Block T-Mobile And Sprint's Merger, Saying It Could Harm Low-Income Communities

Last month, T-Mobile and Sprint officially announced plans to merge companies. A big talking point that the two used to create excitement was that it would allow for the rapid creation of a nationwide 5G network. Now, ten states have sued T-Mobile and Sprint in order to prevent the merger. The states include California, Colorado, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New York, Michigan, Mississippi, Virginia, and Wisconsin. The main argument centers around how this merger will stifle competition. If there are fewer choices for cellphone services, then the few that exist can easily rack up prices. This can cause headaches for low-income communities, where even the smallest price increase could cause a family to lose service. In a statement, New York’s Attorney General Letitia James said: “When it comes to corporate power, bigger isn’t always better. The T-Mobile and Sprint merger would not only cause irreparable harm to mobile subscribers nationwide by cutting access to...

Jun 12, 2019

Supreme Court Ruling Allows Monopoly Lawsuit Against Apple To Proceed. Setting a Powerful Legal Precedent

Recently, the Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s decision that comes as a serious blow to Apple. The case in question, Apple Inc. v. Pepper , revolves around whether Apple’s App Store is a monopoly — and if iPhone users have the right to sue. On Monday, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 that Apple app buyers could sue the company for allegedly driving up prices. The complaint says that because Apple charges a 30 percent commission to app developers, that fee is then passed onto consumers. This is a big deal because Apple tried to say users can buy apps on other platforms so their store isn’t a monopoly, as reported by The Verge . In addition, Apple claimed iOS users are “indirect purchasers.” In other words, they’re buying from the app developer and not from Apple. As a result, Apple itself cannot be sued. That logic rested on the Illinois Brick doctrine, which comes from an earlier Supreme Court case, Illinois Brick Co. v. Illinois. As summarized by Wired , the state of Illinois sued...

May 14, 2019

India Begins Investigating Google For Alleged Android Abuse

Google may be under hot water after the Competition Commission of India (CCI) started examining Google’s Android practices because of complaints from unspecified people last year . Now, the CCI has ordered a complete investigation of Google. Two unnamed sources told Reuters that the preliminary found Google abused the “dominant position of its Android operating system to block rivals.” When it comes to smartphones, it really comes down to whether you use Android or iOS. A January 2018 Newzoo article found that worldwide, Android dominates the market — largely due to China and India. So, it’s no small thing for the CCI to begin looking into Google’s business practices. If Google is found guilty, TechCrunch reported that it could be fined up to 10 percent of its local revenue of 300 percent of its net profit. “Android has enabled millions of Indians to connect to the internet by making mobile devices more affordable,” a Google spokesperson told TechCrunch. “We look forward to working...

May 13, 2019

Apple May Be Hit With An EU Antitrust Investigation Because Of Spotify

In March, Spotify shook the table when the company accused Apple of stifling competition through its “Apple tax.” Notoriously, Apple takes a 30 percent “tax” cut from any subscriptions made in its App Store. Now, Apple may be facing some repercussions. According to the Financial Times , three unnamed sources confirmed that the European Union has decided to launch an antitrust investigation into Apple. If the EU does launch an investigation, the Financial Times reported that they can make Apple change business policies deemed unlawful and issue fines of up to 10 percent of a company’s global turnover. “If we pay this tax, it would force us to artificially inflate the price of our Premium membership well above the price of Apple Music,” Spotify CEO Daniel Ek said in a March blog post . “And to keep our price competitive for our customers, that isn’t something we can do.” In addition to Apple’s Tax, Spotify claimed that Apple restricts music-streaming services in competition with its...

May 6, 2019

An Old Antitrust Case is Coming Back to Bite Google

Back in 2017, the European Union hit Google with a $2.7 billion antitrust violation for prioritizing itself over rivals in search results. Now, that decision is being invoked by Idealo — a German-based price comparison service — as the company sues Google over its abuse of power, as reported by the Wall Street Journal . On Friday, the company filed its suit in a Berlin court alleging that Google made it difficult for its search engine users to find links to Idealo, as reported by the WSJ. Idealo claims that this happened because Google started its own price comparison service, Google Shopping . By invoking the 2017 case, Idealo can make the argument that Google hasn’t changed its practices, despite being hit with fines. Within that case, Google was accused of using its search engine to steer users towards its own shopping platform. According to the Journal, Idealo is requesting about $565 million in damages from Google. “I’m absolutely convinced that our case will send an important...

Apr 12, 2019

European Union Hits Google With Another Antitrust Fine

The European Union seems to have lost all patience for playing games with big tech companies. Today, the European Union announced that it fined Google €1.5 billion ($1.7 billion). It’s the company’s third antitrust violation in the country since 2017. The fine came because Google was blocking rival online search advertisers. In a statement, EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said, “Google has cemented its dominance in online search adverts and shielded itself from competitive pressure by imposing anti-competitive contractual restrictions on third-party websites.” Through Google’s AdSense for Search, the company provided ads for websites, like those of newspapers, with a search function that also comes up with results and ads. Google would stop publishers from including any search ads from its competitors on their page results. This meant the publishers were relying on Google in order to profit from ads. In addition, a 2009 clause also made publishers seek Google’s...

Mar 20, 2019