A bipartisan group of lawmakers on Friday introduced a handful of antitrust measures, including one designed to potentially dismantle large tech companies operating businesses with conflicts of interest.
Among the package of five bills was a proposal dubbed the Ending Platform Monopolies Act, which would potentially force large companies to split up or create companies with a conflict of interest. The measure would prohibit online platforms from owning companies that encourage the platform to promote their own products over others offered on their platforms.
Lawmakers have criticized Amazon, for example, for selling its own branded products on its website, raising questions about whether it fairly markets the products of its competitors.
The bill is sponsored by Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., Whose district includes Amazon’s Seattle headquarters.
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Another bill in the package would prevent companies from exercising their own preference for their own products on their platform, while a third would increase merger control.
Lawmakers have also proposed increasing the filing fees paid to antitrust agencies for merger reviews and allowing users to transfer information between major platforms.
The proposals, in general, are believed to target Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon, only affecting companies with a market value of $ 600 billion and 500,000 or more monthly active users.
None of the companies responded to Fox News’ request for comment.
Fostering healthy competition in the tech sector is a central point for lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, although there is not always agreement on how to introduce regulation to achieve this goal. . It is not clear whether the bills introduced on Friday could garner the votes needed to pass both chambers.
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Meanwhile, there are a lot of efforts now in the courts to try to ensure that companies do not engage in monopolistic behavior.
As previously reported by FOX Business, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost filed a lawsuit this week to classify Google as a public utility in the state due to its dominance of internet search.
The complaint disputes the fact that the company is able to feature its own products on its results pages.
This week, Google settled an antitrust lawsuit in France and agreed to pay $ 268 million. He also promised to make online advertising easier for businesses.
Amazon was sued last month by the DC attorney general for anti-competitive practices.
Facebook was sued in 2020 by federal officials.
The Justice Department sued Google in October over competition concerns.