yesEmily BirnbaumNone
×

Get access to Protocol

I’ve already subscribed

Will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy

Bulletins

House Democrats' report attacks Big Tech 'monopolies'

"Underdog startups … have become the kinds of monopolies we last saw in the era of oil barons and railroad tycoons."

The House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee on Tuesday released its highly anticipated final report, the 449-page culmination of its 15-month investigation into Big Tech. The report concludes that Facebook, Google, Amazon and Apple have too much power and must be reined in.


The report's key findings:

"Facebook has monopoly power in the market for social networking. Internal communications among the company's chief executive officer, Mark Zuckerberg, and other senior executives indicate that Facebook acquired its competitive threats to maintain and expand its dominance. For example, a senior executive at the company described its acquisition strategy as a 'land grab' to 'shore up' Facebook's position, while Facebook's CEO said that Facebook 'can likely always just buy any competitive startups,' and agreed with one of the company's senior engineers that Instagram was a threat to Facebook."

"Google has a monopoly in the markets for general online search and search advertising. Google's dominance is protected by high entry barriers, including its click-and-query data and the extensive default positions that Google has obtained across most of the world's devices and browsers. A significant number of entities — spanning major public corporations, small businesses and entrepreneurs — depend on Google for traffic, and no alternate search engine serves as a substitute."

"Amazon has significant and durable market power in the U.S. online retail market. This conclusion is based on the significant record that subcommittee staff collected and reviewed, including testimonials from third-party sellers, brand manufacturers, publishers, former employees and other market participants, as well as Amazon's internal documents. Although Amazon is frequently described as controlling about 40% of U.S. online retail sales, this market share is likely understated, and estimates of about 50% or higher are more credible."

"Apple has significant and durable market power in the mobile operating system market. Apple's dominance in this market, where it controls the iOS mobile operating system that runs on Apple mobile devices, has enabled it to control all software distribution to iOS devices. As a result, Apple exerts monopoly power in the mobile app store market, controlling access to more than 100 million iPhones and iPads in the U.S."

The report includes a set of recommendations for curtailing the power of the tech industry, including breaking up the tech giants and reinvigorating antitrust enforcement by federal agencies.

Politics

'Woke tech' and 'the new slave power': Conservatives gather for Vegas summit

An agenda for the event, hosted by the Claremont Institute, listed speakers including U.S. CTO Michael Kratsios and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

The so-called "Digital Statecraft Summit" was organized by the Claremont Institute. The speakers include U.S. CTO Michael Kratsios and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, as well as a who's-who of far-right provocateurs.

Photo: David Vives/Unsplash

Conservative investors, political operatives, right-wing writers and Trump administration officials are quietly meeting in Las Vegas this weekend to discuss topics including China, "woke tech" and "the new slave power," according to four people who were invited to attend or speak at the event as well as a copy of the agenda obtained by Protocol.

The so-called "Digital Statecraft Summit" was organized by the Claremont Institute, a conservative think tank that says its mission is to "restore the principles of the American Founding to their rightful, preeminent authority in our national life." A list of speakers for the event includes a combination of past and current government officials as well as a who's who of far-right provocateurs. One speaker, conservative legal scholar John Eastman, rallied the president's supporters at a White House event before the Capitol Hill riot earlier this month. Some others have been associated with racist ideologies.

Keep Reading Show less
Emily Birnbaum

Emily Birnbaum ( @birnbaum_e) is a tech policy reporter with Protocol. Her coverage focuses on the U.S. government's attempts to regulate one of the most powerful industries in the world, with a focus on antitrust, privacy and politics. Previously, she worked as a tech policy reporter with The Hill after spending several months as a breaking news reporter. She is a Bethesda, Maryland native and proud Kenyon College alumna.

Latest Stories