The federal government is increasing its efforts of an antitrust probe into big firms. Last week, House Judiciary Committee lawmakers asked Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, and Facebook to share sensitive papers, comprising confidential interactions among top-level officials that detail their interior processes. All 4 firms have a deadline of October 14, 2019, to fulfill the need.
The committee has not made any lawful requests of the firms yet. On the other hand, the chair of the antitrust subcommittee, Representative David Cicilline, claimed that the request marks an “essential landmark in this probe.
Generally speaking, the subcommittee needs to know whether Apple, Amazon, Google, and Facebook engaged in anti-competitive means and whether the officials at those firms knew what was occurring. To that point, many of the paper’s requests are associated to earlier mergers.
For example, in the case of Facebook, the firm was requested to share papers in which Mark Zuckerberg may have discussed about competitors such as Snapchat and Vine, apart from data that shows the leadup to the firm’s acquirements of WhatsApp and Instagram. Facebook was also requested to show its relationship with 3rd-party creators.
In the meantime, the request to Google demands the firm to share data associated to 24 services and products, comprising Waze and YouTube. As with all the other demands, the firm has been requested to offer emails that show many of its acquirements. Each of the 4 firms was also requested to share details associated to “any earlier probe” they might have been exposed to.
On a related note, earlier over 50% of the country’s AGs were anticipated to declare an antitrust probe into Google, the media reported. Info on the probe was restricted, but it was yet one more investigation into fears that big tech had gathered too much power.