Oct 28, 2021: The Information’s Creator Economy Summit

The European Commission's competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager. Photo by Bloomberg
The Briefing
Entertainment Policy

Tech’s New Growth Industry: Antitrust Inquiries

Photo: The European Commission's competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager. Photo by Bloomberg

The role of big tech companies in creating jobs is often underappreciated. And we’re not just talking about software engineering jobs or chefs in fancy campus cafeterias. Given the proliferating number of tech-focused antitrust inquiries, particularly in Europe, it’s a good bet a lot of jobs are being created at European regulatory agencies and law firms dealing with those agencies. On Friday, for instance, came a report that the U.K.’s antitrust authority was investigating Amazon and Google about whether they are cracking down enough on fake reviews.

The same authority is also scrutinizing Apple and Google’s mobile ecosystems. The European Commission, meanwhile, is investigating Google’s ad tech business, Amazon’s Prime program, Facebook's collection of ad data, and Apple’s Apple Pay. It is separately pursuing lawsuits against Apple on its app store, Amazon on how it treats sellers and Google's Google Shopping business. And then there are the inquiries underway in individual countries. Germany, for instance, is scrutinizing Google’s market power. And this list, compiled with the help of my London colleague Mark Di Stefano, is doubtless missing a few entries.

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