Washington — The Computer & Communications Industry Association has filed an amicus brief on how the Supreme Court should look at multi-sided business models from an antitrust perspective when it hears the upcoming Ohio v. American Express case. While CCIA does not weigh in on the substance of the financial services issues impacting merchant fees, the…
Competition is one of the fundamental drivers of innovation in dynamic sectors such as the high tech industry. Competition norms are quintessential to ensure that dynamic competition governs the high tech sector, so that market positions are not entrenched and companies continue to innovate. Hence, consumers can benefit from the innovations that such competition brings about. To this end, regulators must be sure abide by the bedrock principle of antitrust law: consumer, not competitor, welfare is paramount.
To ensure that tech-related innovation continues to play a positive role in the global economy, sound competition policy and antitrust enforcement both must play a crucial role in ensuring that competition exists across markets.The Internet is characterized by extremely low barriers to entry and vibrant competition among market participants. Furthermore, many companies operating on the Internet are so-called multi-sided business models.
CCIA believes in smart, well-targeted antitrust enforcement that recognizes different market realities supported by sound economic analysis. As such, regulators must be cognizant of choke points where market characteristics lead to competition problems. Given the vast differences in technology markets, CCIA’s positions on antitrust cases are not ideological but case specific and fact driven.
CCIA encourages competition authorities to continue to endeavor resources to understand the market dynamics that govern the Internet to ensure that enforcement actions tackle anticompetitive behavior that undermine innovation and consumer welfare. Similarly, CCIA intervenes, on a case by case basis, in those processes aimed at clarifying the antitrust norms applicable for companies operating on the Internet, providing the Industries’ viewpoints to the benefit of consumers.