Antitrust and the Federal Trade Commission in 2023

By Mark Jamison

Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/22711505

Excerpt from Mark Jamison’s piece, Antitrust and the Federal Trade Commission in 2023 in the Washington Examiner.

“Generally, Republicans have a limited appetite for government controls, but some have signed on to Democrat antitrust reforms, apparently believing that large tech companies possess market power and have used it to diminish conservative voices on social media. The revelations coming out of Twitter support these beliefs. But some conservatives are recognizing that if social media content moderation practices are a problem, the problem exists regardless of whether a platform has market power. This insight means antitrust is not a remedy for content moderation problems. So, Republicans might find agreement on content moderation reform—although not in the context of antitrust reform—but Democrats are unlikely to agree with them, because Republican constituents want more liberty and Democrat constituents appear to want more control.

Absent legislation, courts will serve as constraints on leaders and agencies in the executive branch who see themselves as the anointed. I expect that the year 2023 will see FTC efforts to expand its role, but these ambitions will be inhibited by the practical problems of creating and enforcing rules for a rapidly evolving economy—and by some courts questioning if the FTC truly has such authority.”

Read the full article here.