Blog o’ Blogs September

Technology and the complexities of international antitrust enforcement have had a time in the spotlight this month, with important changes that will no doubt be scrutinized and discussed in coming weeks. With EU Commissioner Vestager at her post and a new slurry of US scrutiny on controversial Digital Giants, the tug-of-war between stability and major upheavals in Antitrust is set to continue providing interesting surprises… and a few unorthodox ideas too. Authors have also looked at the increasing polarization of the Antitrust discourse, with academics and practitioners alike looking into controversial cases dealing with novel issues, from “cloning” to algorithmic wrongdoing. A strong sampling of discussions, sure to give plenty to discuss before the year is out…

Big Tech Meets Its Pecora Commission: Why Google’s Toughest Opponent Is Now Congress
Today, I’m going to write about the increasing legal heat on Google, which is now being probed by a coalition of 50 state attorneys general and a Congressional subcommittee. I’ll delve into these investigations, and show where they might be headed….
Matt Stoller (Big)

Legacy of Vestager’s First Term, Episode 1: The State aid Crusade
State aid control has undoubtedly been a focus for Competition Commissioner Vestager over the past five years… 
Bernard van de Walle de Ghelcke, Caroline Borgers & Salome Haddou (Linking Competition)

Sylvie Goulard: A Commissioner to Watch
While Vestager has secured the post as Executive Vice President for digital issues, there is another stronghold for economic policy in the Commission: Sylvie Goulard, nominated as Commissioner for Internal Market…
Guest (D’Kart)

Some Antitrust Whistleblower News
On September 17, 2019 Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim testified before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights.  During his testimony there was an interesting exchange between Senator Grassley and Mr. Delrahim relating to whistleblowing and antitrust violations…
Robert Connolly (Cartel Capers)

Against the footballisation of competition policy: how to advance the general interest and avoid polarisation
It looks like everything is polarised these days. In certain countries, citizens’ positions have moved towards the extremes. Many voters abandon the centre ground to embrace radical views…
Pablo Ibanez Colomo (Chilling Competition)

The Problem of Algorithmic Corporate Misconduct
Technology will soon force broad changes in how we conceive of corporate liability….
Mihailis E. Diamantis (Oxford Law Blog)

The STRONGER Patents Act is Bad for Patients
The STRONGER Patents Act is proposed legislation that if passed would ultimately lead to higher drug prices for patients while lining the pockets of the big pharmaceutical companies.
Doyle, Barlow & Mazard PLLC (Antitrust Lawyer Blog)

The ad tech industry is crowded and competitive
“Ad tech”—the technology that powers digital advertising on publishers’ sites—is an important part of a healthy web. Google’s investments in this space help publishers make money to fund their work, make it easy for businesses large and small to reach consumers, and support the creative and diverse content we all enjoy…
Sissie Hsiao (Google Blog)

We have reached “peak cloning” in Silicon Valley’: when does copying your competitor’s product become anticompetitive?
‘We have reached “peak cloning” in Silicon Valley’, read a recent tweet by Jeff Morris Jr. (Tinder’s director of product). ‘There are no rules anymore’,…
Friso Bostoen (CoRe Blog)

‘Experimental’ WEF/UK guidelines for AI procurement: some comments
On 20 September 2019, and as part of its ‘Unlocking Public Sector Artificial Intelligence’ project, the World Economic Forum (WEF) published the White Paper Guidelines for AI Procurement…
Albert Sanchez-Graells(How to Crack a Nut)

Cost Discrimination
One hears constantly about the power of technology to enable price discrimination, which is the charging to each consumer of a price equal to the maximum that the consumer is willing to pay for a given product…
Ramsi Woodcock (What am I missing?)

Bigger than “Big Tech?” The Need to Reform Our Health Care System Using Choice and Competition
Christine Wilson, FTC has a great new speech up online – Bigger than “Big Tech?” The Need to Reform Our Health Care System Using Choice and Competition…
D. Daniel Sokol(Antitrust Prof. Blog)

Merger Non-Compete Clauses – Be Lawful or Be Gone
Non-compete clauses are commonly included in M&A agreements. Although generally recognized as lawful, non-competes must fulfill certain requirements to comply with antitrust and competition laws…
Diana Gillis and James J. Tierney (Orrick)

Competition Law academics’ favourite articles
I asked European academics/friends specializing in competition law to send me their 3 favorite competition law articles ever written and to explain their choice. Not easy (at all!) but here is their contribution…
Thibault Schrepel 
(Le Concurrentialiste
)