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The End Of Antitrust History Revisited, Lina M. Khan Jan 2020

The End Of Antitrust History Revisited, Lina M. Khan

Faculty Scholarship

This Review engages Tim Wu’s book, The Curse of Bigness, to explain the significance of the current rupture in antitrust and to situate it within a broader intellectual trajectory. Debates over the foundational purpose of antitrust are not new, and examining how this latest clash fits alongside previous contestations is essential for understanding what has yielded the current contestability and assessing the competing visions.

Part I of this Review summarizes Wu’s chief contributions in his recent work, focusing on three tenets that form the basis of the book. Part II offers an analytic breakdown of the overhaul in ...


Nascent Competitors, C. Scott Hemphill, Tim Wu Jan 2020

Nascent Competitors, C. Scott Hemphill, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

A nascent competitor is a firm whose prospective innovation represents a serious threat to an incumbent. Protecting such competition is a critical mission for antitrust law, given the outsized role of unproven outsiders as innovators and the uniquely potent threat they often pose to powerful entrenched firms

In this Article, we identify nascent competition as a distinct analytical category and outline a program of antitrust enforcement to protect it. We make the case for enforcement even where the ultimate competitive significance of the target is uncertain, and explain why a contrary view is mistaken as a matter of policy and ...


Antitrust & Corruption: Overruling Noerr, Tim Wu Jan 2020

Antitrust & Corruption: Overruling Noerr, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

We live in a time when concerns about influence over the American political process by powerful private interests have reached an apogee, both on the left and the right. Among the laws originally intended to fight excessive private influence over republican institutions were the antitrust laws, whose sponsors were concerned not just with monopoly, but also its influence over legislatures and politicians. While no one would claim that the antitrust laws were meant to be comprehensive anti-corruption laws, there can be little question that they were passed with concerns about the political influence of powerful firms and industry cartels.

Since ...


The Global Dominance Of European Competition Law Over American Antitrust Law, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton, Katerina Linos, Alex Weaver Jan 2019

The Global Dominance Of European Competition Law Over American Antitrust Law, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton, Katerina Linos, Alex Weaver

Faculty Scholarship

The world’s biggest consumer markets – the European Union and the United States – have adopted different approaches to regulating competition. This has not only put the EU and US at odds in high-profile investigations of anticompetitive conduct, but also made them race to spread their regulatory models. Using a novel dataset of competition statutes, we investigate this race to influence the world’s regulatory landscape and find that the EU’s competition laws have been more widely emulated than the US’s competition laws. We then argue that both “push” and “pull” factors explain the appeal of the EU’s ...


The Separation Of Platforms And Commerce, Lina M. Khan Jan 2019

The Separation Of Platforms And Commerce, Lina M. Khan

Faculty Scholarship

A handful of digital platforms mediate a growing share of online commerce and communications. By structuring access to markets, these firms function as gatekeepers for billions of dollars in economic activity. One feature dominant digital platforms share is that they have inte­grated across business lines such that they both operate a platform and market their own goods and services on it. This structure places domi­nant platforms in direct competition with some of the businesses that de­pend on them, creating a conflict of interest that platforms can exploit to further entrench their dominance, thwart competition, and stifle innovation ...


The Chicago School’S Limited Influence On International Antitrust, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton, Filippo Maria Lancieri Jan 2019

The Chicago School’S Limited Influence On International Antitrust, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton, Filippo Maria Lancieri

Faculty Scholarship

Beginning in the 1950s, a group of scholars primarily associated with the University of Chicago began to challenge many of the fundamental tenants of antitrust law. This movement, which became known as the Chicago School of Antitrust Analysis, profoundly altered the course of American antitrust scholarship, regulation, and enforcement. What is not known, however, is the degree to which Chicago School ideas influenced the antitrust regimes of other countries. By leveraging new datasets on antitrust laws and enforcement around the world, we empirically explore whether ideas embraced by the Chicago School diffused internationally. Our analysis illustrates that many ideas explicitly ...


After Consumer Welfare, Now What? The "Protection Of Competition" Standard In Practice, Tim Wu Jan 2018

After Consumer Welfare, Now What? The "Protection Of Competition" Standard In Practice, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

The consumer welfare standard in antitrust has been heavily criticized. But would, in fact, abandoning the “consumer welfare” standard make the antitrust law too unworkable and indeterminate?

I argue that there is such a thing as a post-consumer welfare antitrust that is practicable and arguably as predictable as the consumer welfare standard. In practice, the consumer welfare standard has not set a high bar. The leading alternative standard, the “protection of competition” is at least as predictable, and arguably more determinate than the exceeding abstract abstract consumer welfare test, while being much truer the legislative intent underlying the antitrust laws ...


The American Express Opinion, Tech Platforms & The Rule Of Reason, Tim Wu Jan 2018

The American Express Opinion, Tech Platforms & The Rule Of Reason, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

This paper makes two points. First, it describes the opinion as creating a mirror-image of the "per se" rulings, this time favoring defendants instead of plaintiffs. Second, however, it points out the narrowness of the decision. If the American Express opinion had created rules for all two-sided platforms it would have fundamentally changed much of antitrust law, by reaching so much of American commerce. For the concept of a two-sided platform is open-ended enough to conceivably describe businesses as diverse as malls, sports leagues, real estate agents, stock exchanges, and most tech platforms. However, the American Express opinion is narrower ...


Competition Law Gone Global: Introducing The Comparative Competition Law And Enforcement Datasets, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton, Chris Megaw, Nathaniel Sokol Jan 2018

Competition Law Gone Global: Introducing The Comparative Competition Law And Enforcement Datasets, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton, Chris Megaw, Nathaniel Sokol

Faculty Scholarship

Competition law has proliferated around the world. Due to data limitations, however, there is little systematic information about the substance and enforcement of these laws. In this paper, we address that problem by introducing two new datasets on competition law regimes around the world. First, we introduce the Comparative Competition Law Dataset, which codes competition laws in 130 jurisdictions between 1889 to 2010. Second, we introduce the Comparative Competition Enforcement Dataset, which provides data on competition agencies’ resources and activities in 100 jurisdictions between 1990 and 2010. These datasets offer the most comprehensive picture of competition law yet assembled and ...


Competition Law Around The World From 1889 To 2010: The Competition Law Index, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton Jan 2018

Competition Law Around The World From 1889 To 2010: The Competition Law Index, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton

Faculty Scholarship

Competition laws have become a mainstay of regulation in market economies today. At the same time, past efforts to study the drivers or effects of these laws have been hampered by the lack of systematic measures of these laws across a wide range of years or countries. In this paper, we draw on new data on the evolution of competition laws to create a novel Competition Law Index (the “CLI”) that measures the stringency of competition regulation from 1889 to 2010. We then employ the CLI to examine trends in the intensity of competition regulation over time and across key ...


Trade Openness And Antitrust Law, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton Jan 2018

Trade Openness And Antitrust Law, Anu Bradford, Adam S. Chilton

Faculty Scholarship

Openness to international trade and adoption of antitrust laws can both curb anti-competitive behavior. But scholars have long debated the relationship between the two. Some argue that greater trade openness makes antitrust unnecessary, while others contend that antitrust laws are still needed to realize the benefits of trade liberalization. Data limitations have made this debate largely theoretical to date. We study the relationship between trade and antitrust empirically using new data on antitrust laws and enforcement activities. We find that trade openness and stringency of antitrust laws are positively correlated from 1950 to 2010 overall, but the positive correlation disappears ...


Market Power And Inequality: The Antitrust Counterrevolution And Its Discontents, Lina M. Khan, Sandeep Vaheesan Jan 2017

Market Power And Inequality: The Antitrust Counterrevolution And Its Discontents, Lina M. Khan, Sandeep Vaheesan

Faculty Scholarship

In recent years, economic inequality has become a central topic of public debate in the United States and much of the developed world. The popularity of Thomas Piketty’s nearly 700-page tome, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, is a testament to this newfound focus on economic disparity. As top intellectuals, politicians, and public figures have come to recognize inequality as a major problem that must be addressed, they have offered a range of potential solutions. Frequently mentioned proposals include reforming the tax system, strengthening organized labor, revising international trade and investment agreements, and reducing the size of the financial sector ...


Blind Spot: The Attention Economy And The Law, Tim Wu Jan 2017

Blind Spot: The Attention Economy And The Law, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Human attention is a resource. An increasingly large and important sector of the economy, including firms such as Google, Facebook, Snap, along with parts of the traditional media, currently depend on attentional markets for their revenue. Their business model, however, present a challenge for laws premised on the presumption of cash markets. This paper introduces a novel economic and legal analysis of attention markets centered on the “attention broker,” the firms that attract and resell attention to advertisers. The analysis has important payouts for two areas: antitrust analysis, and in particular the oversight of mergers in high technology markets, as ...


Blind Spot: The Attention Economy And The Law, Tim Wu Jan 2017

Blind Spot: The Attention Economy And The Law, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Human attention is a resource. An increasingly large and important sector of the economy, including firms such as Google, Facebook, Snap, along with parts of the traditional media, currently depend on attentional markets for their revenue. Their business model, however, present a challenge for laws premised on the presumption of cash markets. This paper introduces a novel economic and legal analysis of attention markets centered on the “attention broker,” the firms that attract and resell attention to advertisers.

The analysis has important payouts for two areas: antitrust analysis, and in particular the oversight of mergers in high technology markets, as ...


Is Music The Next Ebooks? An Antitrust Analysis Of Apple's Conduct In The Music Industry, Alexa Klebanow, Tim Wu Jan 2015

Is Music The Next Ebooks? An Antitrust Analysis Of Apple's Conduct In The Music Industry, Alexa Klebanow, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Over the last twenty years, two waves of technological change have transformed the way people purchase and listen to music. First, digital downloads displaced physical sales of albums. More recently, digital downloads, once the primary way to gain access to digital music, have come to be challenged by streaming services. Apple, a leader in the digital download market with iTunes, has engaged in various strategies to meet the challenge. This paper specifically focuses on two types of conduct – Apple’s pressure on labels to enter into exclusive license agreements, also known as windowing, and Apple’s pressure on the market ...


Competition Policy And Free Trade: Antitrust Provisions In Ptas, Anu Bradford, Tim Buthe Jan 2015

Competition Policy And Free Trade: Antitrust Provisions In Ptas, Anu Bradford, Tim Buthe

Faculty Scholarship

Trade agreements increasingly contain provisions concerning ‘behind-the-border’ barriers to trade, often beyond current World Trade Organization (WTO) commitments (Dur, Baccini and Elsig 2014). Today’s preferential trade agreements (PTAs) may include, for instance, rules regarding ‘technical’ barriers to trade that go beyond the WTO’s Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT Agreement), accelerating the replacement of differing national product safety standards with common international standards and thus reducing the trade-inhibiting effect of regulatory measures (Buthe and Mattli 2011; World Trade Organization 2012). Today’s PTAs may also go beyond WTO rules in prohibiting preferences for domestic producers in government ...


Intellectual Property Experimentalism By Way Of Competition Law, Tim Wu Jan 2014

Intellectual Property Experimentalism By Way Of Competition Law, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Competition law and Intellectual Property have divergent intellectual cultures – the former more pragmatic and experimentalist; the latter influenced by natural law and vested rights. The US Supreme Court decision in Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis is an intellectual victory for the former approach, one that suggests that antitrust law can and should be used to introduce greater scrutiny of the specific consequences of intellectual property grants.


Parallel Exclusion, C. Scott Hemphill, Tim Wu Jan 2012

Parallel Exclusion, C. Scott Hemphill, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Scholars and courts have long debated whether and when "parallel pricing" – adoption of the same price by every firm in a market – should be considered a violation of antitrust law. But there has been a comparative neglect of the importance of "parallel exclusion" – conduct, engaged in by multiple firms, that blocks or slows would-be market entrants. Parallel exclusion merits greater attention, for it can be far more harmful than parallel price elevation. Setting a high price leaves the field open for new entrants and may even attract them. In contrast, parallel action that excludes new entrants both facilitates price elevation ...


Antitrust Law In Global Markets, Anu Bradford Jan 2012

Antitrust Law In Global Markets, Anu Bradford

Faculty Scholarship

Multilateral corporations’ activities span across global markets. Yet antitrust laws regulating those activities remain national. Europeans can ban American companies from merging, tell American companies how to design their products, or determine what kind of discounts American companies are permitted to offer to their customers. Chinese can impose conditions on off-shore mergers. And Brazilians can insist on reviewing a transaction with minimal connections to the Brazilian market.


Parallel Exclusion, C. Scott Hemphill, Tim Wu Jan 2012

Parallel Exclusion, C. Scott Hemphill, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Scholars and courts have long debated whether and when "parallel pricing" – adoption of the same price by every firm in a market – should be considered a violation of antitrust law. But there has been a comparative neglect of the importance of "parallel exclusion" – conduct, engaged in by multiple firms, that blocks or slows would-be market entrants. Parallel exclusion merits greater attention, for it can be far more harmful than parallel price elevation. Setting a high price leaves the field open for new entrants and may even attract them. In contrast, parallel action that excludes new entrants both facilitates price elevation ...


Taking Innovation Seriously: Antitrust Enforcement If Innovation Mattered Most, Tim Wu Jan 2012

Taking Innovation Seriously: Antitrust Enforcement If Innovation Mattered Most, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Now is a particularly important time to consider the relationship between antitrust and innovation. Both US and European antitrust enforcement authorities are taking a look at the state of competition on the Internet, an inquiry that puts into clear focus the need for antitrust to take seriously its relationship with innovation policy.

How would the enforcement of antitrust look if the promotion of innovation were its paramount concern? I present 3 suggestions: (1) law enforcement would be primarily concerned with the exclusion of competitors. (2) A competition law centered on promoting innovation would take very seriously its oversight of "innovation ...


International Antitrust Cooperation And The Preference For Nonbinding Regimes, Anu Bradford Jan 2011

International Antitrust Cooperation And The Preference For Nonbinding Regimes, Anu Bradford

Faculty Scholarship

Today, multinational corporations operate in increasingly international markets, yet antitrust laws regulating their competitive conduct remain national. Thus, corporations are subject to divergent antitrust regimes across the various jurisdictions in which they operate. This increases transaction costs, causes unnecessary delays, and raises the likelihood of conflicting decisions. The risks inherent in multi-jurisdictional regulatory review were prominently illustrated in the proposed GE/Honeywell acquisition, which failed following the European Union’s (“EU”) decision to prohibit the transaction despite its earlier approval in the United States. Inconsistent remedies imposed on Microsoft following parallel investigations by both the U.S. and EU authorities ...


When The Wto Works, And How It Fails, Anu Bradford Jan 2010

When The Wto Works, And How It Fails, Anu Bradford

Faculty Scholarship

This Article seeks to explain when an international legal framework like the WTO can facilitate international cooperation and when it fails to do so. Using an empirical inquiry into different agreements that the WTO has attempted to facilitate — specifically, intellectual property and antitrust regulation — it reveals more general principles about why the WTO can facilitate agreement in some situations and not in others. Comparing the successful conclusion of the TRIPS Agreement and the failed attempts to negotiate a WTO antitrust agreement indicates that international cooperation is likely to emerge when the interests of powerful states align and when concentrated interest ...


When The Wto Works, And How It Fails, Anu Bradford Jan 2010

When The Wto Works, And How It Fails, Anu Bradford

Faculty Scholarship

This Article seeks to explain when an international legal framework like the WTO can facilitate international cooperation and when it fails to do so. Using an empirical inquiry into different agreements that the WTO has attempted to facilitate – specifically intellectual property and antitrust regulation – it reveals more general principles about when and why the WTO can facilitate agreement in some situations and not others. Comparing the successful conclusion of the TRIPs Agreement and the failed attempts to negotiate a WTO antitrust agreement reveal that international cooperation is likely to emerge when the interests of powerful states are closely aligned and ...


International Antitrust Negotiations And The False Hope Of The Wto, Anu Bradford Jan 2007

International Antitrust Negotiations And The False Hope Of The Wto, Anu Bradford

Faculty Scholarship

Multinational corporations (“MNCs”) operate today in an increasingly open global trade environment. While tariff barriers have collapsed dramatically, several states and numerous scholars have raised concerns that the benefits of trade liberalization are undermined by various non-tariff barriers (“NTBs”) to trade, including the anticompetitive business practices of private enterprise. As a result, demands to link trade and antitrust policies more closely by extending the coverage of the World Trade Organization (“WTO”) to incorporate antitrust law have gathered momentum over the last decade.


Why Have A Telecommunications Law? Anti-Discrimination Norms In Communications, Tim Wu Jan 2006

Why Have A Telecommunications Law? Anti-Discrimination Norms In Communications, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

This paper presents telecommunications law with a challenge: how much of the present Telecommunication's Acts objectives might be accomplished with a focus on a central anti-discrimination rule? The one-rule model provides one answer. This rule should be (1) a general norm that is technologically neutral, (2) in the form of an ex ante rule with ex poste remedies, and (3) anchored on a model of consumers' rights. The form of the rule recommended here is hardly radical. It is, rather, something of a restatement of the best of telecommunications practice based on decades of telecommunications experience. It borrows from ...


The Copyright Paradox, Tim Wu Jan 2005

The Copyright Paradox, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Over the last decade, writers begun to try and understand the other side of copyright, sometimes called its competition policy, communications policy, or regulatory side. This paper focuses attention on a crucial problem familiar to antitrust courts that is becoming more clearly important to copyright decisions. In both copyright and antitrust, a central question is how important intent is. Judges, stated slightly differently, face a choice between what we can characterize as the bad actor and welfarist models of deciding cases. What we can call the bad actor approach punishes alleged wrong-doers based on the mens rea of the suspect ...


The Copyright Paradox, Tim Wu Jan 2005

The Copyright Paradox, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

Copyright law has become an important part of American industrial policy. Its rules are felt by every industry that touches information, and today that means quite a bit. Like other types of industrial policy, copyright in operation purposely advantages some sectors and disadvantages others. Consequently, today's copyright courts face hard problems of competition management, akin to those faced by the antitrust courts and the Federal Communications Commission.

How should courts manage competition using copyright? Over the last decade, writers have begun to try to understand the "other side" of copyright, variously called its innovation policy, communications policy, or regulatory ...


Assessing Theories Of Global Governance: A Case Study Of International Antitrust Regulation, Anu Bradford Jan 2003

Assessing Theories Of Global Governance: A Case Study Of International Antitrust Regulation, Anu Bradford

Faculty Scholarship

An effective, legitimate model of global governance must strike a delicate balance between national sovereignty and international cooperation. As such, governance on an international level is a constantly evolving discourse among multiple actors whose respective roles and influence vary across time and policy realms. The participation of multiple actors in global governance is widely recognized, but there is considerable disagreement as to the appropriate distribution of power among these participants and the optimal pattern for their interaction. We may never be able to construct an ideal global governance model. But the attempt to create such a model by examining the ...