Biden Big Tech anti-competition order imminent, will call for return of net neutrality

Posted:
in General Discussion edited July 2021
A new Executive Order will contain multiple measures aimed at protecting the ability of small businesses to compete against Big Tech firms, including asking the FCC to restore net neutrality.

Credit: White House
Credit: White House


Following his asking the FTC to step up right-to-repair regulations, President Biden is now also to require the commission and other bodies to increase their anti-competition role.

According to CNBC, the President is introducing 72 new anti-competition measures in an Executive Order due to be signed Friday, July 9.

"The impulse for this Executive Order is really around where can we encourage greater competition across the board," Brian Deese, White House chief economic advisor, told CNBC. "[Big Tech platforms have] created significant problems... [including] problems for users in terms of privacy and security, [and] for small businesses in terms of entering markets."

Among the 72 measures, the FTC is to be asked to:

  • "Challenge prior bad mergers"

  • Ban occupational licensing restrictions

  • Ban or limit non-compete agreements

  • Draft new rules on data collection and surveillance practices

At the same time, the Federal Communications Commission is to be encouraged to:

  • Restore net neutrality

  • Block exclusivity deals between landlords and broadband providers

The Executive Order will also establish a "White House Competition Council," to lead federal responses to the growing economic power of large corporations.

"[This] is not just about monopolies," said Deese, "but it's about consolidation more generally and the lack of competition when you have a limited set of market players."

The new Executive Order directing the FTC comes shortly after the Federal Trade Commission confirmed Lina Khan as its new chair.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,557member
    Well, if the POTUS can do this then why can’t he order the FTC to require third party app stores, force Apple to allow accept them and allow side-loading, and regulate app store commissions? 
  • Reply 2 of 17
    WgkruegerWgkrueger Posts: 352member
    lkrupp said:
    Well, if the POTUS can do this then why can’t he order the FTC to require third party app stores, force Apple to allow accept them and allow side-loading, and regulate app store commissions? 
    Sarcasm, right? 
    MacProGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 3 of 17
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 2,783member
    Apple is a big company, they will adapt.
    If right to repair rules are put in Apple will adapt.
    If alternative stores are mandated, Apple will adapt.
    Apple has been doing this for a long time. They will adapt. They will keep making cool devices. They will do what they do best. 
    MacProwelshdogwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 17
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,453member
    lkrupp said:
    Well, if the POTUS can do this then why can’t he order the FTC to require third party app stores, force Apple to allow accept them and allow side-loading, and regulate app store commissions? 
    Maybe he could. So what?
    muthuk_vanalingamelijahg
  • Reply 5 of 17
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    lkrupp said:
    Well, if the POTUS can do this then why can’t he order the FTC to require third party app stores, force Apple to allow accept them and allow side-loading, and regulate app store commissions? 

    Because he knows that would be a dumb thing to do.
  • Reply 6 of 17
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    Competition (or lack of) is tricky:   Sometimes it's good.   Sometimes it's bad.
    I helped my grandson survive cyberschool through 3/4's of his 8th grade.   One of the highlights was his outstanding Social Studies teacher who taught critical thinking and understanding the overall picture rather than sticking to an ideology.  

    And, part of that was America's Industrial revolution that ran from the 1880's through to the 1920's.   It was led by the likes of Carnegie, Vanderbilt, Rockefeller, Edison, Westinghouse and so on.   Each of them built a monopolistic empire that pulled America out of its lowly agricultural basis and created technologies that changed people's lives:   Rockefeller, for the first time lit people's homes and enabled businesses and factories to run after dark with with his oil -- and Edison and Westinghouse improved on that with electric lighting.   Vanderbilt created the behemoth that moved American people and goods through the country.   Carnegie built the steel rails that Vanderbilt's trains ran on and enabled people to build bridges that crossed rivers that couldn't previously be crossed and for the skyscrapers that we see today in America's cities.   And, while they were doing that they created jobs not only for Americans but for many millions of (mostly) European immigrants.  And, at the same time,  they propelled America to become a world class industrial empire. 

    They built the America that we know today -- they created immeasurable American wealth and power AS WELL AS immeasurable suffering as they exploited their workers and viciously snuffed out any and all competition.

    All of that was done by the monopolies that they created and fought to protect and expand.

    So, the question on the test was:
    "Were these guys "Robber Barons" or "Captains of Industry"? "
    ... The good part was that the question could be answered either way and still be correct!    They were both.

    (I'm wishing that Biden had sat through that class as I and my grandson did.  It was eye opening)
    edited July 2021 muthuk_vanalingamwillett
  • Reply 7 of 17
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    I am happy to see control of the internet removed from the "kind, gentle, caring hands" (cough!) of Comcast and Verizon and returned to the people.

    100 years ago our electric grid was recognized as part of America's infrastructure and treated accordingly -- and that included the government pushing it out to all areas of the country rather than just a few, select profitable parts.
    The internet is no different and needs to be treated the same way:   As a utility the nation depends on.
    muthuk_vanalingampatchythepiratewillett
  • Reply 8 of 17
    acejax805acejax805 Posts: 109member
    At this point, the internet ought to be treated the same as other required utilities (I didn’t think the same way back in 2008, but the internet is of vital importance now for almost every single thing we do today) so consider me a convert. Antitrust stuff; I’ve experienced both Android and iOS app stores. I’d rather have then operate like a PC. The owner of said device can download/install ANYTHING they damn well please. Less security is no excuse to shelter choice. We don’t learn/improve if we live a sheltered life and have to rely on someone else to keep us safe. 
    MplsPelijahg
  • Reply 9 of 17
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 2,783member
    acejax805 said:
    At this point, the internet ought to be treated the same as other required utilities (I didn’t think the same way back in 2008, but the internet is of vital importance now for almost every single thing we do today) so consider me a convert. Antitrust stuff; I’ve experienced both Android and iOS app stores. I’d rather have then operate like a PC. The owner of said device can download/install ANYTHING they damn well please. Less security is no excuse to shelter choice. We don’t learn/improve if we live a sheltered life and have to rely on someone else to keep us safe. 
    I’ve realized what is going to happen if Apple has to allow alternate App Stores. The Apps will still have to run on iOS, meaning things like sandboxing and such that are pushed down by iOS won’t change. The big change will be if someone downloads malware and screws up their device. No more restoring and saving. The first step will be nuke and pave. Sometimes it will be “sorry it’s unsalvageable”. If you take a PC loaded with a severe malware infection in to a shop that’s what they’re going to do, nuke and pave. Some shops will start by throwing your existing drive away and starting fresh. Expect to see that if iOS and padOS are opened up to alternate sources for Apps. No more Mr. Nice Apple. To me it won’t make any difference. I’ll still get my apps on the AppStore. 
    JWSCwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 17
    KTRKTR Posts: 278member
    I am pretty sure these big tech lawyers will be looking for loop holds.  Damn Americans don't realize that these companies will start making their products crappy.  so you will have to purchase, more product cause of the bad build quality.  And the the company(s) will find a reason to claim that the incident is not covered under warranty.  Or even better, consumers  will have to end up paying hidden fees ( taxes )  When these tech companies need to make up the difference in the margins.  
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 17
    DAalseth said:
    Apple is a big company, they will adapt.
    If right to repair rules are put in Apple will adapt.
    If alternative stores are mandated, Apple will adapt.
    Apple has been doing this for a long time. They will adapt. They will keep making cool devices. They will do what they do best. 
    Yes, Apple will adapt by being forced to make inferior and less secure products. Brilliant strategy there.
    GeorgeBMacrobabawatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 17
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    DAalseth said:
    acejax805 said:
    At this point, the internet ought to be treated the same as other required utilities (I didn’t think the same way back in 2008, but the internet is of vital importance now for almost every single thing we do today) so consider me a convert. Antitrust stuff; I’ve experienced both Android and iOS app stores. I’d rather have then operate like a PC. The owner of said device can download/install ANYTHING they damn well please. Less security is no excuse to shelter choice. We don’t learn/improve if we live a sheltered life and have to rely on someone else to keep us safe. 
    I’ve realized what is going to happen if Apple has to allow alternate App Stores. The Apps will still have to run on iOS, meaning things like sandboxing and such that are pushed down by iOS won’t change. The big change will be if someone downloads malware and screws up their device. No more restoring and saving. The first step will be nuke and pave. Sometimes it will be “sorry it’s unsalvageable”. If you take a PC loaded with a severe malware infection in to a shop that’s what they’re going to do, nuke and pave. Some shops will start by throwing your existing drive away and starting fresh. Expect to see that if iOS and padOS are opened up to alternate sources for Apps. No more Mr. Nice Apple. To me it won’t make any difference. I’ll still get my apps on the AppStore. 

    That's all true.   But not all of the truth.
    As our phones increasingly become gateways into the world of FinTech and our finances are controlled by them simply losing data becomes the least of our worries.

    For instance:  i seldom use either cash or card anymore -- I pay for almost everything with Apple Pay (Even online).  In addition, I've only been inside a bank once in the past 18 months -- and that was to convert the type of savings account I had and then transfer money from it.  And, much to my surprise, the bank wouldn't transfer the money for me -- they made me do it myself (inside the bank) on my iPhone.

    Plus, Apple is increasingly storing private, personal health care information on our phones.  And, now they're talking about storing our IDs on it as well.

    No, the need for security has risen to a far higher level than what we have dealt with on PCs.
    robabawatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 17
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    DAalseth said:
    Apple is a big company, they will adapt.
    If right to repair rules are put in Apple will adapt.
    If alternative stores are mandated, Apple will adapt.
    Apple has been doing this for a long time. They will adapt. They will keep making cool devices. They will do what they do best. 
    Yes, Apple will adapt by being forced to make inferior and less secure products. Brilliant strategy there.

    Yeh, i can't wait for my iPhone to be as secure as my Windows PC.    /s
    robabapatchythepiratewatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 17
    robabarobaba Posts: 228member
    DAalseth said:
    acejax805 said:
    At this point, the internet ought to be treated the same as other required utilities (I didn’t think the same way back in 2008, but the internet is of vital importance now for almost every single thing we do today) so consider me a convert. Antitrust stuff; I’ve experienced both Android and iOS app stores. I’d rather have then operate like a PC. The owner of said device can download/install ANYTHING they damn well please. Less security is no excuse to shelter choice. We don’t learn/improve if we live a sheltered life and have to rely on someone else to keep us safe. 
    I’ve realized what is going to happen if Apple has to allow alternate App Stores. The Apps will still have to run on iOS, meaning things like sandboxing and such that are pushed down by iOS won’t change. The big change will be if someone downloads malware and screws up their device. No more restoring and saving. The first step will be nuke and pave. Sometimes it will be “sorry it’s unsalvageable”. If you take a PC loaded with a severe malware infection in to a shop that’s what they’re going to do, nuke and pave. Some shops will start by throwing your existing drive away and starting fresh. Expect to see that if iOS and padOS are opened up to alternate sources for Apps. No more Mr. Nice Apple. To me it won’t make any difference. I’ll still get my apps on the AppStore. 
    You will only so long as all the apps you need remain available on the AppStore.  What happens when something you need is ONLY available outside of Apples servers?  Not so much choice involved now eh?  Will every iOS/iPadOS app still be available from Apples website?  If not that’s anti-consumer right?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 17
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 6,397member
    DAalseth said:
    acejax805 said:
    At this point, the internet ought to be treated the same as other required utilities (I didn’t think the same way back in 2008, but the internet is of vital importance now for almost every single thing we do today) so consider me a convert. Antitrust stuff; I’ve experienced both Android and iOS app stores. I’d rather have then operate like a PC. The owner of said device can download/install ANYTHING they damn well please. Less security is no excuse to shelter choice. We don’t learn/improve if we live a sheltered life and have to rely on someone else to keep us safe. 
    I’ve realized what is going to happen if Apple has to allow alternate App Stores. The Apps will still have to run on iOS, meaning things like sandboxing and such that are pushed down by iOS won’t change. The big change will be if someone downloads malware and screws up their device. No more restoring and saving. The first step will be nuke and pave. Sometimes it will be “sorry it’s unsalvageable”. If you take a PC loaded with a severe malware infection in to a shop that’s what they’re going to do, nuke and pave. Some shops will start by throwing your existing drive away and starting fresh. Expect to see that if iOS and padOS are opened up to alternate sources for Apps. No more Mr. Nice Apple. To me it won’t make any difference. I’ll still get my apps on the AppStore. 
    Explain how this imaginary app that is operating within sandboxing "screws up" the device.
    gatorguyelijahg
  • Reply 16 of 17
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,905member
    designr said:
    AppleInsider said:
    • Ban or limit non-compete agreements

    These are private contracts. Seems like governmental overreach. But, well...

    • Restore net neutrality

    Eh. This sounds wonderful. Who could possibly be opposed to "neutrality"?! But it's not an obvious slam dunk of value.
    AppleInsider said:
    • Block exclusivity deals between landlords and broadband providers
    How about banning cities and municipalities from granting monopolies in this area?
    If the noncompete clauses are leading to pseudomonopolies and stifling competition the. It’s hardly government overreach. It’s not quite the same, but remember when the iPhone came out and you could only use AT&T? How many people would have died to get a Verizon iPhone those first 3 years?

    Net neutrality is really the ultimate in eliminating no compete clauses. Think back to the old days of landline phones - how would people have felt if it cost more to call Target than Walmart because Walmart had a deal with AT&T?

    Cities shouldn’t grant monopolies, either. No one should - that’s the whole point. 

    I completely agree with @acejax805 - the internet should be considered a utility at this point. The pandemic has made that even more clear. Think about your life and how much depends on the internet - most of it at this point. Now think about how crippled you would be without it. 

    Back in the 30s the Rural Electrification Association was created that helped bring electricity to areas other than big cities and brought rural America out of the ‘dark’ ages. We really need something similar for internet access. 
    GeorgeBMacelijahg
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