The House Judiciary Committee held a markup hearing for a slate of antitrust bills aimed at reigning in the power of the nation’s largest tech companies. The bills included the Mergers Filing Fee Modernization Act of 2021 (H.R. 3843), the State Antitrust Enforcement Venue Act of 2021 (H.R. 3460), the Augmenting Compatibility and Competition by Enabling Service Switching (ACCESS) Act (H.R. 3849), the Platform Competition and Opportunity Act of 2021 (H.R. 3826), the American Choice and Innovation Online Act (H.R. 3816), and the Ending Platform Monopolies Act (H.R. 3825). The six bills were approved via rollcall vote with bipartisan support, meaning they will continue to the entire House of Representatives. These bills, along with the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act of 2021 (also known as the Safe Harbor Bill), which is set to be considered by the Committee with the remaining few antitrust bills, aim to restore fairness and competition to an online marketplace that has been lacking both for some time. If passed into law, these six bills and the JCPA would give news publishers a much better ability to reap the benefits of their hard work. However, the tech giants targeted by this legislation are not backing down. Several of the largest tech companies criticized the bills, saying they would do more harm than good, and are expected to continue opposing the antitrust bills as they proceed through the legislative process. A statement released by House Judiciary Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) can be read here.
Members of the News Media Alliance staff have contributed to this post.