The Digital Markets Act makes clear choices about important tradeoffs in value to constrain the arbitrary power and dominance of gatekeepers over digital markets and guarantee a more equitable distribution of value with business users. We argue that the extent those objectives will be realized depend largely on the nature of competition, both the type of competition (within vs. across platforms) and the competition dynamics (Winner-Take-All vs. differentiation). We anticipate that the choices about the tradeoffs in value taken in the DMA will prevent gatekeepers to monopolize the focal market but in very limited cases. This is because the DMA seems to protect specific competitors (some large business users against gatekeepers) rather than competition, as well as protecting only one type of competition (within platform) instead of also, and the more salient for contestability in digital markets, cross platform competition. We discuss these tradeoffs and the implications for competition, value distribution and welfare.
By Carmelo Cennamo & Juan Santaló
The Digital Markets Act (“DMA”) introduces new regulations to limit business strategy discretion of “gatekeepers” – i.e. large, dominant digital platforms acting as intermediaries of core digital services that control main gateways to markets – with the aim of guaranteeing more equitable distribution of value between the gatekeeper and its business users, what the DMA refers to as!-->…