Top tech CEOs are set to defend their companies’ massive market shares before a U.S. House of Representatives panel at the end of the month.
On July 27, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Apple’s Tim Cook, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Google’s Sundar Pichai are scheduled to appear before the House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee.
In a new joint statement from House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman David Cicilline (D-RI), they contend these moguls have a lot to explain.
“Since last June, the subcommittee has been investigating the dominance of a small number of digital platforms and the adequacy of existing antitrust laws and enforcement,” they note. “Given the central role these corporations play in the lives of the American people, it is critical their CEOs are forthcoming.”
In June 2019, the subcommittee launched a bipartisan investigation into what it then described as “the growth of monopoly power across our economy.”
Bezos has never appeared before Congress. Yet, as long as certain conditions were met, Amazon’s founder-CEO recently said he would be willing to make his first official appearance on Capitol Hill.
Tech giants have recently come under increased scrutiny from lawmakers around the world.
Stateside, the Justice Department continues to probe the business operations of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google.
In April, a federal judge approved a $5 billion privacy settlement between Facebook and the Federal Trade Commission.
Lawmakers recently took aim at Facebook-owned WhatsApp and other apps and digital services that allow end-to-end encryption.
In what they are calling the Lawful Access to Encrypted Data Act, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) and U.S. Senators Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tennessee) said “warrant-proof” encryption features jeopardize national security.
Separately, conservative activists recently stated their intention to ask an appellate court to reconsider claims that Google, Twitter, Facebook and Apple violated the First Amendment and antitrust laws by conspiring to suppress conservative views.