European Union: Feeling Macho?

May 22, 2020

Big technology carries a lot of political clout in the United States, but not as much in the European Union. The TRT World explains that, “EU Looks For Evidence To Rein In US Tech Giants” and force them end rivalries and their share data and standards among each other. The EU apparently does not joke around when it comes to Internet gatekeepers, because they do not like them.

The EU does not want Google, Apple, Amazon, and Facebook controlling information and services, rather new legislation could close their gate keeping practices. Before the legislation is considered, the EU launched a $649,800 study to collect evidence about the gate keeping. The study will search for self-referencing practices and:

“The study should also focus on tech companies’ use of data from one market to expand into other markets, making it difficult for current or new rivals to compete, the paper said, citing the example of Facebook and its WhatsApp unit.

Another area of interest is information asymmetries characterized by social media platforms and search engines amassing vast amounts of data via free services, resulting in users reluctant to switch to a competing company.”

Arguments against the proposed legislation are that the EU would be limited in Internet related services and benefits, plus it would make the economy an uneven playing field.

The report is currently progressing with a three month interim report and the final report due in five months.

When big companies are broken up that usually means there is more business and less monopolies. In most mixed economies, monopolies are illegal.

Whitney Grace, May 22, 2020

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