Antitrust Chronicle – Online Advertising

Antitrust Chronicle – Online Advertising

Dear Readers, Speaking at the 2005 IAB Engage conference in London, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said: “The future of advertising is the internet.” With the advent of the digital economy, and advertising shifting from newspapers, radio, and television to the internet, we have also seen a shift in the regulatory approach of some governments from […]

Big Data and Online Advertising: Emerging Competition Concerns

Big Data and Online Advertising: Emerging Competition Concerns

By Hon. Katherine B. Forrest (fmr.) –   The concept of big data has captured the public’s attention primarily in regards to its privacy implications. However, the significance of big data in the competition sphere can no longer be ignored. Europe has been taking an increasingly aggressive stance in the big data realm — with multiple […]

Public Goods, Private Information: Providing an Interesting Internet

Public Goods, Private Information: Providing an Interesting Internet

By J. Howard Beales III –   Internet content is a public good: It is not used up in consumption. Private market provision of such public goods has generally depended on revenue from advertising, as does internet content today. The value of advertising, however, depends critically on the availability of information about the likely viewer. When […]

What Times-Picayune Tells Us About the Antitrust Analysis of Attention Platforms

What Times-Picayune Tells Us About the Antitrust Analysis of Attention Platforms

By David S. Evans –   Times-Picayune, a 1953 Supreme Court decision involving newspapers, has gained notoriety from the Court’s American Express decision concerning credit-card networks. The Amex dissent argued that the Court had already decided how to apply the rule-of-reason analysis to two-sided platforms in Times-Picayune, and got it right then, but got it wrong […]

Online Advertising and Antitrust: Network Effects, Switching Costs, and Data as an Essential Facility

Online Advertising and Antitrust: Network Effects, Switching Costs, and Data as an Essential Facility

By Catherine E. Tucker –  In this paper, I discuss some of the traditional sources of market power grounded in economics, and how they apply to online advertising markets. I discuss the idea that digital advertising has evolved technologies that are intended to dismantle many early network effects in online advertising. I then discuss how […]

Attention Oligopoly: Comments on the Paper by Prat & Valletti

Attention Oligopoly: Comments on the Paper by Prat & Valletti

By David Parker & Federico Bruni –  The nature and the extent of online platforms’ market power is a hot topic in competition policy. One recent contribution to the debate is a working paper by Andrea Prat (Columbia University) and Tommaso Valletti (Chief Economist at DG Competition). The paper considers situations where online platforms capture […]

Competition in Display Ad Technology: A Retrospective Look at Google/Doubleclick and Google/Admob

Competition in Display Ad Technology: A Retrospective Look at Google/Doubleclick and Google/Admob

By Dan Bitton, David Pearl, Maurits Dolmans & Henry Mostyn –  This article seeks to demystify the complex online advertising ecosystem and correct some common misconceptions about it. It conducts a retrospective analysis of the Google/DoubleClick and Google/AdMob merger reviews, and concludes that agencies were right to reject complaints that the transactions would lead to […]

Advertising as Monopolization in the Information Age

Advertising as Monopolization in the Information Age

By Ramsi A. Woodcock –  Economists have long recognized that advertising has two main functions: To inform and to persuade. In the information age, the information function is obsolete, because consumers can get all the product information they want from a quick Google search. That makes virtually all advertising today purely persuasive in function. The […]

A New Digital Social Contract to Encourage Internet Competition

A New Digital Social Contract to Encourage Internet Competition

By Dipayan Ghosh –  The digital advertising industry has three major players, one of them relatively new to the fold. But the commercial regime that has led to their dominance in their respective markets draws not on the strength of their relationships with advertisers, but rather the extortionate rates that they charge for a perfectly […]

From Demoting To Squashing? Competitive Issues Related to Algorithmic Corrections: An Application to the Search Advertising Sector

From Demoting To Squashing? Competitive Issues Related to Algorithmic Corrections: An Application to the Search Advertising Sector

By Frédéric Marty –  To what extent can algorithmic corrections made by dominant operators expose them to competitive procedures? The opacity of the algorithms used to adjust auction results on keywords for search-related ads can lead to lawsuits based on alleged algorithmic manipulations. Such corrections are necessary to ensure the quality of the advertisements displayed. […]