Antitrust Posts

Big Tech Under Antitrust Scrutiny by DOJ

Justice Department Opens Antitrust Review of Big Tech Companies: (“The federal government has turned its full investigative powers toward examining the world’s biggest technology companies, building on a backlash against the industry that has been growing for over a year. * * * The Justice Department said on Tuesday that it would start an antitrust review into how internet giants had accumulated market power and whether they had acted to reduce competition. Similar inquiries are underway in Congress and at the Federal Trade Commission, which shares antitrust oversight responsibilities with the Justice Department. * * * The action is the clearest sign yet that the longtime arguments that helped shield the tech giants from antitrust scrutiny are eroding. Since the 1970s, a consensus in antitrust circles has been that if companies were focused on consumer welfare — for example, by offering low prices — they were not likely to attract federal intervention. Since companies like Google and Facebook largely provide free services, the thinking went, they were not subject to federal antitrust examination.”)

DOJ Targeting Human Resource Professionals

Department of Justice Now Targeting Human Resources Professionals for Criminal Antitrust Violations: (“Human capital (i.e., skilled labor) has become increasingly vital to the success of business enterprises. But such invaluable capital can also be extremely difficult to attract and retain, as corporate loyalty has become less of a two-way street and the gold ring of opportunity swings by. * * * Although tempting additions or alternatives to sometimes problematic noncompete agreements, [no-poach and wage-fixing agreements] may soon carry federal criminal penalties.”)