BBC: Apple charged over ‘anti-competitive’ app policies

BBC: Apple charged over ‘anti-competitive’ app policies. “Apple has been charged with breaking EU competition rules over the way it runs its App Store. European Commission anti-trust regulator Margrethe Vestager tweeted that ‘consumers are losing out’. It relates to charges brought two years ago by music streaming app Spotify which claimed that Apple was stifling innovation in that industry.”

The Verge: Google reportedly ran secret ‘Project Bernanke’ that boosted its own ad-buying system over competitors

The Verge: Google reportedly ran secret ‘Project Bernanke’ that boosted its own ad-buying system over competitors. “Google wrote in the unredacted filing that data from Project Bernanke was ‘comparable to data maintained by other buying tools,’ according to the Journal. The company was able to access historical data about bids made through Google Ads, to change bids by its clients and boost the clients’ chances of winning auctions for ad impressions, putting rival ad tools at a disadvantage. Texas cited in court documents an internal presentation from 2013 in which Google said Project Bernanke would bring in $230 million in revenue for that year.”

Facebook’s Acquisition of GIPHY: Potential Competition Issues (Congressional Research Service)

From the Congressional Research Service, and in PDF form: Facebook’s Acquisition of GIPHY: Potential Competition Issues. “Facebook is now facing antitrust lawsuits, some of which focus on its past acquisitions. This Insight discusses how Facebook’s acquisitions can affect competition in digital advertising and the potential implications of the antitrust lawsuits on Facebook’s acquisition of GIPHY.”

CNBC: Facebook’s acquisition of Giphy to face in-depth UK competition probe

CNBC: Facebook’s acquisition of Giphy to face in-depth UK competition probe. “Britain’s competition regulator said Thursday that it was referring Facebook’s acquisition of GIF database Giphy for an in-depth investigation. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) recently completed its initial probe into the Facebook-Giphy merger — which has already closed — and concluded that the deal raises competition concerns.”

BNN Bloomberg: Google Makes Bid to Move Texas Monopoly Case to California

BNN Bloomberg: Google Makes Bid to Move Texas Monopoly Case to California. “A Google lawyer told U.S. District Judge Sean Jordan on Thursday during a hearing in Plano, Texas, that the case has no special connection to Texas and mirrors claims in lawsuits already filed in California. The company is battling three government claims of abuse of monopoly power. Google’s search business was targeted in separate lawsuits filed by the U.S. Justice Department and a group of states. The complaint in Texas focuses on digital advertising.”

Politico: How Washington fumbled the future

Politico: How Washington fumbled the future. “Few moments in the power struggle between Washington and Silicon Valley have inspired more anger and bafflement than one in January 2013, when antitrust regulators appointed by former President Barack Obama declined to sue Google. The decision still rankles the company’s rivals, who have watched the search giant continue to amass power over smartphones, data-hoovering devices and wide swaths of the internet, unimpeded by laws meant to deter monopolies.”

Exclusive: Google’s privacy push draws U.S. antitrust scrutiny – sources (Reuters)

Reuters: Exclusive: Google’s privacy push draws U.S. antitrust scrutiny – sources. “Google’s plan to block a popular web tracking tool called ‘cookies’ is a source of concern for U.S. Justice Department investigators who have been asking advertising industry executives whether the move by the search giant will hobble its smaller rivals, people familiar with the situation said.”

Wired: Big Music Needs to Be Broken Up to Save the Industry

Wired: Big Music Needs to Be Broken Up to Save the Industry. “THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC has shattered the music industry. By taking away live music for what will likely be 18 months or more, Covid has ended the revenue stream that animated an entire music ecosystem. This is particularly true for independent artists with few other means of making a living in today’s industry. Musicians lost two-thirds of their typical income in 2020. Live music revenue fell 85 percent. The Save Our Stages bill, passed in December as part of the second round of pandemic relief, has offered a lifeline. But even after it’s again safe to see a live gig, the underlying driver of the music industry’s deep inequity will persist.”