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House lawmakers launch antitrust investigation into Big Tech

The House Judiciary Committee is launching an investigation into giant tech firms like Facebook and Google to establish no matter whether they are abusing their marketplace dominance and violating antitrust law.

“The open internet has delivered enormous benefits to Americans, including a surge of economic opportunity, massive investment, and new pathways for education online,” Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) stated in a statement. “But there is growing evidence that a handful of gatekeepers have come to capture control over key arteries of online commerce, content, and communications.”

The investigation comes amid developing tensions in between regulators and Silicon Valley. Over the previous couple of days, reports surfaced that the Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department had been creating arrangements as to which agency would be in charge of investigating person tech firms. The FTC will be in charge of Facebook and Amazon, and the Justice Department will have the authority to go following Google and Apple.

In March, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) announced that, if elected president in 2020, she would function to undo consummated tech mergers (Facebook’s Instagram acquisition, for instance) and introduce legislation enforcing new antitrust requirements for tech firms.

Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) will lead the investigation as chair of the committee’s antitrust sub-panel, and stated nowadays that he would be hunting into Silicon Valley as a entire rather than taking aim at distinct firms. Cicilline also stated that he would like to hear from enterprise executives and could challenge subpoenas if they do not agree to testify in the future.

Investigators will document competitors issues, analyze no matter whether substantial firms are abusing their energy, and appear into achievable new legislation that would address these issues, according to a press release.

“Big Tech plays a huge role in our economy and our world,” Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA) stated. “As tech has expanded its market share, more and more questions have arisen about whether the market remains competitive. Our bipartisan look at competition in the digital markets gives us the chance to answer these questions and, if necessary, to take action.”

Apple, Facebook, and Amazon did not instantly respond to request for comment. Google declined to comment.

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