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These Six Facts Can Share Big Tech For Good, Here’s How

Illustrations for the article titled Here’s Who in the Six Antitrust Projects That Could Finally Break Big Tech

Photo: Graeme Jennings (Getty Images)

Then two years and a 30-hour debate session on the House plan, U.S. House Justice Committee voted Thursday to pass a vast package of six bills collectively destined to reign in the massive power of the Big Tech market.

Even if it was there a recent bipartisan push for a major tech breakthrough, this week’s marathon debate has highlighted some of them riffs series between the two parties — and even indrentu the two parties – which could dampen the project’s hopes of being passed into law. Some GOP reporters, like Jim Jordan from Ohio, have it publicly thank you against measures such as a group of “Democrat Bills,” which are too radical to move on to reunite among his fellow Republicans. Some Democratic lawmakers, meanwhile, expression of concerns about some of the privacy implications of invoice data. On both sides, there was vocal concern that the formulation of the project was too broad, and potentially invited some unintended consequences for smaller technology companies. Of course, there is also a bipartisan consensus among California lawmakers that these projects will be bad for their donor components.

Despite those concerns, the support of both sides of the committee has led all six bipartisan bills ahead of a future vote on the House plan. Undoubtedly, this means we are going to hear it stronger lobbying by the main technological actors, more debate by the regulators involved, and even more … Jim Jordan-ing and Jim Jordan.

Here’s what you need to know about each of the factors, so you can keep up with the good guys, bad guys and Jims:

Online Law of American Choice and Innovation

First up is the Online Law of American Choice and Innovation This is sponsored by the head of antitrust subcommittee David Cicilline, and by Republican Rep. Lance Gooden, of Texas. In short, this project is intended to prevent large technology companies from preferring their own products to competitors using their platforms. This would target Amazon, which has been captured multiple times sneaking products from its roughly 100 private labels at the top of Amazon’s search results, though collecting data from third-party vendors to create those private labels in the first place.

It would also put the spotlight on Google’s chokehold on the digital advertising market, which is currently under investigation by AG multiple states in the United States and antitrust guard dogs in the EU. If the invoice changes to its current form, Google will need to modify its search results so that Google’s own products do not appear in the first place in the same way. sometimes do now. Instead of being attacked with advertising from Google Flights and Google Hotels the next time you plan your vacation using Google Search, under this project, ads from companies like Expedia or United Airlines would have an equal impact in sharing those slots. from the top.

On top of all that, the bill prohibits these big platforms from using non-public data to support their own platform — that is, it was Amazon. taken to do with data collected from third-party vendors. Companies that are caught violating this rule, for the bill, must pay a fine of up to 15% or 30% of their total revenues in the United States. And if this bill goes into law, the Federal Trade Commission would create one bureau of digital markets he is only charged with enforcing the act.

Competition Act and Platform Opportunities

Then there is the Competition Act and Platform Opportunities which was co-sponsored by Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and Republican Rep. Ken Buck. This project bans any platform with “at least 50,000,000 monthly active users based in the United States” – such as Facebook, Google. Apple or Amazon – holding more than a quarter of a competitor’s stock or profits; moves that could deter these players potentially pick up a competitor healthy. Facebook, in particular, has been to blame for so long copy, purchase, or direct killing competing applications using these tactics (and others), to maintain their steely grip on the social media market.

Last December, the FTC launched a formal dress on its own against the company over its 2012 Instagram acquisition, and its WhatsApp acquisition back in 2014. At the moment, the Commission accused the company to systematically acquire competitors as a way to beat competition. We hope that the passage of this bill will prevent society from doing the same to its smaller rivals (* cough * TikTok * cough *) in the future.

Finished Act of the Monopoly Act

The third project was the most controversial, going alone a vote 21-20 after hours of debate: u Finished Act of the Monopoly Act which was supported by Representatives Pramila Jayapal and Lance Gooden. In short, this bill would make them illegal for a dominant platform – say, Amazon or Apple – create their lines of business to attract “nascent or potential competition” from competitors using their platform. This means that Amazon might be forced to discontinue the private label brands it sells on its platform, and Apple might be forced to push certain app which come preinstalled on people’s iPhones, such as Pages, Keynote, and Numbers.

Some have suggested that the bill would even force Apple to cede its entire App Store business. The Store is already there he snapped with anti-competitive claims over the cut sent Apple takes all in-app purchases, and the fact that it’s the only option for people looking to download apps to their iOS-u device the most popular Mobile OS in the United States.

All of that seems unequivocally good stuff — so where does the controversy come from? Well, some legal experts have sustinia that the project would actually end up rooting out the technical giants and preventing them from competing with … others. Apple could not develop a search engine to compete with Google under this bill, for example, and Google would have to sell YouTube, makes it harder for that video society compete with Netflix. In other words, this project will stop the tech giants in some ways, but give them one huge helping hand in others.

Meanwhile, other critics have pointed out what the current iteration of the project is too wide really useful for them. In short, the bill leaves it to the FTC to decide what these companies should be forced to spinning off, and offer no guidance on where to draw the line. Should Apple spin off the app store, or all of its iOS software? And the Apple Watch, or any other type of hardware? Without those lines drawn in the sand, critics say, the FTC will be left scrambling when it comes time to implement this bill.

Increase Compatibility and Competition by activating the Service Change Act

Then there is the Increase Compatibility and Competition by activating the Service Change Act-Aka the Access Act, co-sponsored by House Reps Mary Scanlon and Burgess Owens. The main goal of this project is to offer people who use platforms like Facebook and YouTube more transparency and control over where their personal data ends up. For the Act, platforms of a certain size will be needed to allow users to take some (or even all) of their data with them if they choose to leave the platform, while still being able to chat and check. -in with friends and family who use these services. If users want to, they can also request that their data be transferred to another platform. So for example, if someone wanted to leave Facebook and take all their data with them, under this project, Facebook would need to find a way to let that person chat with their family via Messenger. without reactivating their account. That said, the bill is not perfect and it doesn’t clarify whether Facebook could or won’t continue data collection through this new channel in the same way he did before.

Defects aside, this project has also earned praise from the likes of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which he called the ACCESS Act is a serious step forward in “breaking the tenure that large technology companies have over our data”. But these data do not come without risk; as EFF and others have pointed out, freer flows of data between companies open up new risks for design; companies could exploit the gaps in the potential law to siphon more of our data than they do already done. This means legislators will have to walk lightly with future bill increases to ensure it is as airtight as possible.

State Antitrust Enforcement Venue Act

Fifth on the list is u State Antitrust Enforcement Venue Act which was led by Rep.Ken Buck from Colorado. This bill is intended to prevent tech titans from transferring antitrust lawsuits to courts that might be perceived as more amicable for corporations, increasing the cost of litigation in the process. As an example, Google maintains proving (and failure) to move its massive suit with Texas AG to its California territory – a move that could only make the case slower to go on trial. If this project goes into law, Google might not even make a petition for this type of move in the first place.

Law on the Modernization of Merger Tariffs

Finally, we have the Law on the Modernization of Merger Tariffs which was co-sponsored by Reps Joe Neguse and Victoria Spartz, which is intended to offer more resources to the DoJ and the FTC so they can, well, enforce antitrust laws. The proposed law will set aside a hefty $ 670 million for the duo’s antitrust divisions, and would substantially increase the fees that large companies like Facebook and Google have to pay for large transactions, such as mergers.

To put things in context a bit: Currently, if a transaction between two megacities involves about $ 920 million or more hand changes, they need to pay $ 280,000 collectively to the FTC to do so. Under the bill, that FTC fee will be added everywhere in between $ 400,000 for transactions between $ 1 billion and $ 2 billion, to $ 800,000 for transactions between $ 2 billion and $ 5 billion, and $ 2.25 million for transactions $ 5 billion or more.

Although the fact that these six projects have passed is a small victory in the ongoing struggle of Congress against the technology giants, the battle will not be over since … a little; there is also (a lot) lobbying to refuse against and much more political struggle to sit. Needless to say, if these projects ended up all in the law books, they could look very, very different by the time they arrive.

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