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Beyond Trade Secrecy: Confidentiality Agreements That Act Like Noncompetes, Camilla A. Hrdy, Christopher B. Seaman Jan 2024

Beyond Trade Secrecy: Confidentiality Agreements That Act Like Noncompetes, Camilla A. Hrdy, Christopher B. Seaman

Scholarly Articles

There is a substantial literature on noncompete agreements and their adverse impact on employee mobility and innovation. But a far more common restraint in employment contracts has been underexplored: confidentiality agreements, sometimes called nondisclosure agreements (NDAs). A confidentiality agreement is not a blanket prohibition on competition. Rather, it is simply a promise not to use or disclose specific information. Confidentiality agreements encompass trade secrets, as defined by state and federal laws, but confidentiality agreements almost always go beyond trade secrecy, encompassing any information the employer imparted to the employee in confidence.

Despite widespread use, confidentiality agreements have received little attention. …


Brief Of Administrative Law Scholars As Amici Curiae In Opposition To Petitioners' Request For Reversal, Jeffrey Lubbers Aug 2023

Brief Of Administrative Law Scholars As Amici Curiae In Opposition To Petitioners' Request For Reversal, Jeffrey Lubbers

Amicus Briefs

Amici curiae are administrative law scholars from universities around the United States.

They are: • William D. Araiza, Professor of Law and Dean of Brooklyn Law School; • Blake Emerson, Professor of Law at UCLA School of Law; • Jeffrey Lubbers, Professor of Practice in Administrative Law at American University Washington College of Law; • Todd Phillips, Assistant Professor of Business Law at Georgia State University J. Mack Robinson College of Business; and • Beau Baumann, Doctoral candidate at Yale Law School.

Amici have a strong interest in how the Court’s decision will affect the field of administrative law and …


Antitrust For Dominant Digital Platforms: An Alternative To The Monopoly Power Standard To Restore Competition, Jordan Ramsey May 2023

Antitrust For Dominant Digital Platforms: An Alternative To The Monopoly Power Standard To Restore Competition, Jordan Ramsey

Senior Honors Theses

Antitrust law is meant to promote competition by prohibiting anticompetitive business practices such as mergers and acquisitions as well as exclusionary conduct. Judicial interpretation of antitrust law has allowed dominant digital platforms to undertake anticompetitive actions without prosecution. The Sherman Antitrust Act should be amended to remove the monopoly power standard that allows firms to engage in anticompetitive conduct as long as the conduct does not create or uphold monopoly power. The amendment would make anticompetitive conduct illegal regardless of monopoly power, as long as six proof requirements are met. This would result in lessened market concentration, which would benefit …


Comments On Federal Trade Commission Non-Compete Ban Proposed Rule, Matter No. P201200, Chaz D. Brooks Apr 2023

Comments On Federal Trade Commission Non-Compete Ban Proposed Rule, Matter No. P201200, Chaz D. Brooks

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

Within signed law professors and law students submitted this letter to the Federal Trade Commission, writing in their individual capacities, not as agents of their affiliated institutions, in support of the Federal Trade Commission’s proposed rule to ban most non-compete clauses (the “Proposal”) as an unfair method of competition.

This letter offers comments in response to areas where the FTC has requested public comment. To make our views clear, this letter contains the following sections: I. Summary of the Proposal; II. The Commission Should Consider Expanding Its Definition of Non-Compete Clauses to Prevent Employers from Requiring Workers to Quit Before …


Stakeholderism Silo Busting, Aneil Kovvali Jan 2023

Stakeholderism Silo Busting, Aneil Kovvali

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The fields of antitrust, bankruptcy, corporate, and securities law are undergoing tumultuous debates. On one side in each field is the dominant view that each field should focus exclusively on a specific constituency—antitrust on consumers, bankruptcy on creditors, corporate law on shareholders, and securities regulation on financial investors. On the other side is a growing insurgency that seeks to broaden the focus to a larger set of stakeholders, including workers, the environment, and political communities. But these conversations have largely proceeded in parallel, with each debate unfolding within the framework and literature of a single field. Studying these debates together …


Developments In The Laws Affecting Electronic Payments And Financial Services, Sarah Jane Hughes, Stephen T. Middlebrook, Tom Kierner Jan 2022

Developments In The Laws Affecting Electronic Payments And Financial Services, Sarah Jane Hughes, Stephen T. Middlebrook, Tom Kierner

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The past year proved to be a busy period for the regulation of electronic payments and financial services. In this year’s survey, we discuss rulemakings, enforcement actions, and other litigation that has significantly impacted the law governing payments and financial services. Part II addresses the ongoing fight between federal and state authorities over which should properly regulate Fin- Tech entities and describes some new steps the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) has taken to assert its authority in this area. Part III details an enforcement action that California regulators took against a FinTech company they determined had …


A Suggested Revision Of The 2020 Vertical Merger Guidelines (July 2021), Steven C. Salop May 2021

A Suggested Revision Of The 2020 Vertical Merger Guidelines (July 2021), Steven C. Salop

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The DOJ/ FTC Vertical Merger Guidelines (VMGs) were adopted by the FTC in June 2020 by a party-line 3-2 party line over the dissent of the Acting Chair. One might expect that the VMGs will be withdrawn and/or revised, now that there is a Democratic majority. Revision is appropriate because the VMGs are both incomplete and overly permissible. This Suggested Revision can aid that process.


The Limits Of Antitrust In The 21st Century, Thomas A. Lambert Jun 2020

The Limits Of Antitrust In The 21st Century, Thomas A. Lambert

Faculty Publications

Antitrust is having a moment. Commentators and policymakers, both progressive and conservative, are calling for increased antitrust enforcement to address all manner of social ills. From technology platforms' power over speech and encroachments on user privacy to wage stagnation in more concentrated labor markets, to competition softening from ever-larger index funds, to growing income inequality, reduced innovation, and threats to democracy itself - the list of maladies for which antitrust has been proposed as a remedy goes on and on.

This Article revisits The Limits of Antitrust in light of the current antitrust moment. Part I describes the central components …


Analyzing Vertical Mergers To Avoid False Negatives: Three Recent Case Studies, Steven C. Salop Apr 2019

Analyzing Vertical Mergers To Avoid False Negatives: Three Recent Case Studies, Steven C. Salop

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

This article analyzes three recent vertical mergers: a private antitrust case attacking the consummated merger of Jeld-Wen and Craftmaster Manufacturing Inc. (“CMI”) that was cleared by the DOJ in 2012 but subsequently litigated and won by the plaintiff, Steves & Sons in 2018; and two recent vertical merger matters investigated and cleared (with limited remedies) by 3-2 votes by the Federal Trade Commission in early 2019 -- Staples/Essendant and Fresenius/NxStage. There are some factual parallels among these three matters that make it interesting to analyze them together. First, the DOJ’s decision to clear Jeld-Wen/CMI merger appears to be a clear …


Books And Olive Oil: Why Antitrust Must Deal With Consolidated Corporate Power, Carl Bogus Jan 2019

Books And Olive Oil: Why Antitrust Must Deal With Consolidated Corporate Power, Carl Bogus

Law Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Procedural Fairness In Antitrust Enforcement: The U.S. Perspective, Christopher S. Yoo, Hendrik M. Wendland Jan 2019

Procedural Fairness In Antitrust Enforcement: The U.S. Perspective, Christopher S. Yoo, Hendrik M. Wendland

All Faculty Scholarship

Due process and fairness in enforcement procedures represent a critical aspect of the rule of law. Allowing greater participation by the parties and making enforcement procedures more transparent serve several functions, including better decisionmaking, greater respect for government, stronger economic growth, promotion of investment, limits corruption and politically motivated actions, regulation of bureaucratic ambition, and greater control of agency staff whose vision do not align with agency leadership or who are using an enforcement matter to advance their careers. That is why such distinguished actors as the International Competition Network (ICN), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the …


Has The Us Economy Become More Concentrated And Less Competitive: A Review Of The Data, Jonathan Baker, Steven Berry, Fiona Scott Morton, Joshua Wright, Gregory Werden Sep 2018

Has The Us Economy Become More Concentrated And Less Competitive: A Review Of The Data, Jonathan Baker, Steven Berry, Fiona Scott Morton, Joshua Wright, Gregory Werden

Congressional and Other Testimony

FTC Chairman Joe Simons presented opening remarks, followed by a day of discussion by a distinguished set of panelists who discussed the following topics (some of which will be discussed on the rescheduled date):the current landscape of competition and consumer protection law and policy;whether the U.S. economy has become more concentrated and less competitive;the regulation of consumer data;antitrust law and the consumer welfare standard; andthe analysis of vertical mergers.This hearing was initially scheduled for September 13-14, 2018, but the second day sessions were rescheduled to November 1 due to inclement weather.


Hipster Antitrust: New Bottles, Same Old W(H)Ine?, Christopher S. Yoo Apr 2018

Hipster Antitrust: New Bottles, Same Old W(H)Ine?, Christopher S. Yoo

All Faculty Scholarship

Although the debate over hipster antitrust is often portrayed as something new, experienced observers recognize it as a replay of an old argument that was resolved by the global consensus that antitrust should focus on consumer welfare rather than on the size of firms, the levels of industry concentration, and other considerations. Moreover, the history of the Federal Trade Commission’s Section 5 authority to prevent unfair methods of competition stands as a reminder of the dangers of allowing enforcement policy to be guided by vague and uncertain standards.


The Erie/Sears/Compco Squeeze: Erie’S Effects On Unfair Competition And Trade Secret Law, Sharon Sandeen Jan 2018

The Erie/Sears/Compco Squeeze: Erie’S Effects On Unfair Competition And Trade Secret Law, Sharon Sandeen

Faculty Scholarship

On the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the Supreme Court's famous decision in Erie Railroad v. Tompkins, this article explores the consequences of that decision on the development of unfair competition law in the United States. It details efforts by lawyers and legislators to grapple with those consequences and provides an overview of the evolution of unfair competition law in the U.S. since Erie, with a particular focus on trade secret law.


Peeling Back The Student Privacy Pledge, Alexi Pfeffer-Gillett Jan 2017

Peeling Back The Student Privacy Pledge, Alexi Pfeffer-Gillett

Scholarly Articles

Education software is a multi-billion dollar industry that is rapidly growing. The federal government has encouraged this growth through a series of initiatives that reward schools for tracking and aggregating student data. Amid this increasingly digitized education landscape, parents and educators have begun to raise concerns about the scope and security of student data collection.

Industry players, rather than policymakers, have so far led efforts to protect student data. Central to these efforts is the Student Privacy Pledge, a set of standards that providers of digital education services have voluntarily adopted. By many accounts, the Pledge has been a success. …


The Actavis Inference: Theory And Practice, Aaron S. Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro Apr 2015

The Actavis Inference: Theory And Practice, Aaron S. Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro

All Faculty Scholarship

In FTC v. Actavis, Inc., the Supreme Court considered "reverse payment" settlements of patent infringement litigation. In such a settlement, a patentee pays the alleged infringer to settle, and the alleged infringer agrees not to enter the market for a period of time. The Court held that a reverse payment settlement violates antitrust law if the patentee is paying to avoid competition. The core insight of Actavis is the Actavis Inference: a large and otherwise unexplained payment, combined with delayed entry, supports a reasonable inference of harm to consumers from lessened competition.

This paper is an effort to assist courts …


Administrating Patent Litigation, Jacob S. Sherkow Jan 2015

Administrating Patent Litigation, Jacob S. Sherkow

Articles & Chapters

Recent patent litigation reform efforts have focused on every branch of govemment-Congress, the President, and the federal courts-save the fourth: administrative agencies. Agencies, however, possess a variety of functions in patent litigation: they serve as "gatekeepers" to litigation in federal court; they provide scientific and technical expertise to patent disputes; they review patent litigation to fulfill their own mandates; and they serve, in several instances, as entirely alternative fora to federal litigation.

Understanding administrative agencies' functions in managing or directing, i.e., "administrating," patent litigation sheds both descriptive and normative insight on several aspects of patent reform. These include several problems …


The Influence Of The Areeda-Hovenkamp Treatise In The Lower Courts And What It Means For Institutional Reform In Antitrust, Rebecca Haw Allensworth Jan 2015

The Influence Of The Areeda-Hovenkamp Treatise In The Lower Courts And What It Means For Institutional Reform In Antitrust, Rebecca Haw Allensworth

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

It is often pointed out that while the United States Supreme Court is the final arbiter in setting antitrust policy and promulgating antitrust rules, it does so too infrequently to be an efficient regulator. And since the antitrust agencies, the Federal Trade Commission ("FTC") and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice ("DOJ"), rarely issue guidelines, and even more rarely issue rules or regulations, very little antitrust law is handed down from on high. Instead, circuits split, and lower courts must muddle through new antitrust problems by finding analogies in technologically and socially obsolete precedents. When faced with this …


Actavis And Error Costs: A Reply To Critics, Aaron S. Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro Oct 2014

Actavis And Error Costs: A Reply To Critics, Aaron S. Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro

All Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court’s opinion in Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis, Inc. provided fundamental guidance about how courts should handle antitrust challenges to reverse payment patent settlements. In our previous article, Activating Actavis, we identified and operationalized the essential features of the Court’s analysis. Our analysis has been challenged by four economists, who argue that our approach might condemn procompetitive settlements.

As we explain in this reply, such settlements are feasible, however, only under special circumstances. Moreover, even where feasible, the parties would not actually choose such a settlement in equilibrium. These considerations, and others discussed in the reply, serve to …


Non-Price Competition In “Substitute" Drugs: The Ftc's Blind Spot, Gregory Dolin Oct 2014

Non-Price Competition In “Substitute" Drugs: The Ftc's Blind Spot, Gregory Dolin

All Faculty Scholarship

As the recent case of United States v. Lundbeck illustrates, the Federal Trade Commission’s lack of knowledge in medical and pharmacological sciences affects its evaluation of transactions between medical and pharmaceutical companies that involve transfers of rights to manufacture or sell drugs, causing the agency to object to such transactions without solid basis for doing so. This article argues that in order to properly define a pharmaceutical market, one must not just consider the condition that competing drugs are meant to treat, but also take into account whether there are “off-label” drugs that are used to treat a relevant condition, …


Where Do We Go From Here: Open Questions And Policy Considerations, Jonathan Baker, Fiona Scott Morton, Daniel Crane, Richard Steuer, Michael Whinston, C. Hemphill, Deborah Feinstein, Renata Hesse Jun 2014

Where Do We Go From Here: Open Questions And Policy Considerations, Jonathan Baker, Fiona Scott Morton, Daniel Crane, Richard Steuer, Michael Whinston, C. Hemphill, Deborah Feinstein, Renata Hesse

Presentations

The Federal Trade Commission and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice held a one-day public workshop on June 23, 2014 to explore the economics and legal policy implications of certain pricing practices, such as loyalty and bundled pricing. The workshop, consisted of presentations and roundtable discussions, that focused on practices in which prices are explicitly or effectively contingent on commitments to purchase or sell a specified share or volume of a single product or a mix of multiple products. Workshop participants considered theoretical and empirical developments in the economic understanding of these practices, discussed developments in the relevant …


Should Section 5 Guidelines Focus On Economic Efficiency Or Consumer Choice?, Robert H. Lande May 2014

Should Section 5 Guidelines Focus On Economic Efficiency Or Consumer Choice?, Robert H. Lande

All Faculty Scholarship

FTC Commissioner Joshua Wright is right that it would be desirable for the Commission to issue Section 5 antitrust guidelines. This article will demonstrate, however, that the best way to formulate Section 5 guidelines is to focus them on the goal of protecting consumer choice, rather than to embrace Commissioner Wright's proposal to neuter the FTC Act by confining it in an economic efficiency straitjacket. Only if Section 5 guidelines were formulated appropriately would they improve consumer welfare during the Commission's second century.


Activating Actavis, Aaron Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro Oct 2013

Activating Actavis, Aaron Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro

All Faculty Scholarship

In Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis, Inc., the Supreme Court provided fundamental guidance about how courts should handle antitrust challenges to reverse payment patent settlements. The Court came down strongly in favor of an antitrust solution to the problem, concluding that “an antitrust action is likely to prove more feasible administratively than the Eleventh Circuit believed.” At the same time, Justice Breyer’s majority opinion acknowledged that the Court did not answer every relevant question. The opinion closed by “leav[ing] to the lower courts the structuring of the present rule-of-reason antitrust litigation.”

This article is an effort to help courts and …


Josh Wright’S “Chicago School Papers”: An Overview, William H. Page Apr 2013

Josh Wright’S “Chicago School Papers”: An Overview, William H. Page

UF Law Faculty Publications

In what follows, I consider three of FTC Commissioner Josh Wright's “Chicago School Papers.” In these papers, Commissioner Wright considers the past, present, and future role of the Chicago School of antitrust analysis in the shaping of law and policy, offering along the way some interesting insights into what his priorities at the FTC are likely to be. The papers discussed have common themes: the mischaracterization of the “Chicago School,” the scientific advantage of dispensing altogether with “School” labels, and a focus on empirical findings in shaping antitrust analysis.


How The Ftc Could Beat Google, Robert H. Lande, Jonathan L. Rubin Oct 2012

How The Ftc Could Beat Google, Robert H. Lande, Jonathan L. Rubin

All Faculty Scholarship

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission is rumored to be deciding whether to bring a “pure Section 5” case against Google as a result of complaints that the company unfairly favors its own offerings over those of its rivals in its search results. But the case will fail miserably at the hands of a reviewing court and the agency will be confined to relatively non-controversial enforcement violations if the FTC fails to impose upon itself a tightly bounded and constrained legal framework that contains clear limiting principles. The only way a court will allow the FTC to pursue a pure Section …


Antitrust Merger Efficiencies In The Shadow Of The Law, D. Daniel Sokol, James A. Fishkin Mar 2011

Antitrust Merger Efficiencies In The Shadow Of The Law, D. Daniel Sokol, James A. Fishkin

UF Law Faculty Publications

This Essay provides an overview of U.S. antitrust merger practice in addressing efficiencies both in terms of actual practice before the agencies and in scholarly work as a response to Jamie Henikoff Moffitt's Vanderbilt Law Review article Merging in the Shadow of the Law: The Case for Consistent Judicial Efficiency Analysis. Moffitt’s analysis could have benefited from a more thorough discussion of the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission’s (collectively, the “agencies”) analysis of efficiencies during investigations and the broader process of negotiations involving mergers. For instance, the article does not discuss the empirical work addressing when the agencies …


Antitrust Merger Efficiencies In The Shadow Of The Law, D. Daniel Sokol, James A. Fishkin Jan 2011

Antitrust Merger Efficiencies In The Shadow Of The Law, D. Daniel Sokol, James A. Fishkin

UF Law Faculty Publications

This Essay provides an overview of U.S. antitrust merger practice in addressing efficiencies both in terms of actual practice before the agencies and in scholarly work as a response to Jamie Henikoff Moffitt's Vanderbilt Law Review article Merging in the Shadow of the Law: The Case for Consistent Judicial Efficiency Analysis. Moffitt’s analysis could have benefited from a more thorough discussion of the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission’s (collectively, the “agencies”) analysis of efficiencies during investigations and the broader process of negotiations involving mergers. For instance, the article does not discuss the empirical work addressing when the agencies …


Equity, Antitrust, And The Reemergence Of The Patent Unenforceability Remedy, Jorge Contreras Jan 2011

Equity, Antitrust, And The Reemergence Of The Patent Unenforceability Remedy, Jorge Contreras

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

The conventional legal analysis of technical standard setting derives primarily from antitrust law. But antitrust remedies, taken alone, may not be broad enough to address recent abuses of the standardization process. The principal example of this shortcoming is the well-known case of Rambus, Inc., which, over the course of several years, was alleged to have concealed relevant patent applications from a standards organization in which it participated and then successfully sued the entire DRAM industry for royalties after the standard was “locked-in.” Remarkably, Rambus prevailed in its litigation campaign despite aggressive enforcement efforts by the Federal Trade Commission. Rambus’s success …


The Intel And Microsoft Settlements, Robert H. Lande Sep 2010

The Intel And Microsoft Settlements, Robert H. Lande

All Faculty Scholarship

This article briefly compares and contrasts the recent U.S. Federal Trade Commission's antitrust settlement with Intel, and the antitrust cases brought against Microsoft. The article praises the FTC's settlement with Intel, and predicts that history will judge it very favorably compared to the settlement by the U.S. Department of Justice of its antitrust case against Microsoft.


Intel And The Death Of U.S. Antitrust Law, Keith N. Hylton Jan 2010

Intel And The Death Of U.S. Antitrust Law, Keith N. Hylton

Faculty Scholarship

The Federal Trade Commission’s (“FTC’s”) new legal attack on Intel threatens to leave the company a shell of its former self. The Commission claims that Intel violated Section 5 of the FTC Act by giving discounts and rebates to customers in a manner that harmed its main rival AMD, by designing its products in a way that disadvantages rivals, and acting too aggressively in protecting its intellectual property. The remedies the FTC is seeking would impose broad restrictions on pricing, product design, and protection of intellectual property.

The FTC’s claims are not well founded in U.S. antitrust law, though they …