Big Tech is feeling serious heat: feat. six major antitrust bills and a new FTC head

Friday, June 25, 2021 by Robinhood Snacks |
_Big Tech's bad news week [AdShooter/E+ via GettyImages]_

Big Tech's bad news week [AdShooter/E+ via GettyImages]

"Not vibes"... Big Tech's current thought bubble. Antitrust issues have dominated the news for a long time, but this week turned up the heat in a big way. Yesterday, a House committee approved sweeping legislation to curb the dominance of Google, Facebook, and their Big Tech frenemies.

  • Six-bill package: Not the kind Bezos likes to receive. Of the six bills that were advanced, one hits hardest: legislation that would prohibit Big Tech companies from playing favorites with their own products on their platforms.
  • Think: Apple not promoting Apple Music over Spotify in the App Store, and Amazon not favoring Amazon Basics in search results.
  • Buuuut: The bills still need to pass the full House to become law, and tech giants are lobbying harder than ever to make sure they don't.

More tech woes... The legislation would also give federal agencies like the FTC way more muscle to block Big Tech acquisitions of startups (like FB & Instagram nine years ago). Last week: Big Tech critic Lina Khan was sworn in to lead the FTC, the US gov't agency that enforces antitrust laws.

  • Google and Apple say the bills could bring significant security concerns, while making the user experience worse.
  • While the legislation has bipartisan support, critics in Congress say it would give too much power to the government in Big Tech operations.

Antitrust just got a whole lot anti-er... That could hit Big Tech where it hurts: in the balance sheet. The aggressiveness of tech lobbying shows how serious of a threat these developments are. If the bills pass, that might make room for smaller companies to compete.