President Biden is setting the federal government’s sights on the power of Big Tech and Big Telecom in a competition order that will urge more regulation and enforcement against the sectors.
The big picture: The new executive order, expected to be signed Friday, includes over 70 initiatives aimed at promoting competition in areas of the economy the Biden administration finds a troubling amount of concentration — including technology markets.
Details: According to a White House fact sheet, the order takes aim at Big Tech by …
- Encouraging the Federal Trade Commission to adopt new rules on the accumulation of personal data, and banning unfair methods of competition on online marketplaces (with the White House calling out platforms’ developing copycat products to compete with small business).
- Adopting a policy of giving greater scrutiny to mergers by dominant online platforms, focusing on those involving smaller competitors, “serial mergers,” data accumulation, the effect on privacy and competition of free products.
The White House also wants internet service providers to offer a “broadband nutrition label” detailing their internet packages to give consumers more transparency when they’re buying service.
The executive order will encourage the FCC to reinstate net neutrality rules prohibiting the blocking, throttling or paid prioritization of web traffic that were repealed by President Trump’s FCC.
Other initiatives meant to save consumers money on their internet bills includes banning “excessive” early termination fees and ending exclusivity arrangements in apartment buildings in which landlords give tenants only one option for an internet provider.