🇪🇺 The EU Shakes Up Big Tech
The European Union is taking a big swing at Big Tech. With the Digital Markets Act (DMA), the bloc has cobbled together various regulations designed to unravel the "interlocking services and considerable resources" companies like Apple and Google use to block smaller companies from growing and becoming rivals, notes the New York Times. When implemented, it will be the most impactful legislation to hit the tech industry since the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in 2018.
The DMA will target "core platform services" that have a market capitalization of at least €75 billion, or an annual turnover of €7.5 billion, and at least 45 million monthly end users in the EU and more than 10,000 annual business users, says TechCrunch.
Failure to comply with the new DMA could cost a company fines in excess of 10% global turnover, and even a company break-up.
The EU is also set to introduce a complimentary law that will require social media companies like Meta (owner of Facebook and Instagram) to "police their platforms more aggressively" adds the Times.
A Global Model
As was the case with 2018's General Data Protection Regulation, Europe's laws may be copied around the world and thus force Big Tech to fundamentally reshape its business practices. “Everyone is watching the D.M.A., be it the leading tech companies, their rivals or foreign governments,” Anu Bradford, a law professor at Columbia Law told the NY Times. “It is possible that even the U.S. Congress will now conclude that they are done watching from the sidelines when the E.U. regulates U.S. tech companies and will move from talking about legislative reform to actually legislating.”
While the United States has been slow (or completely inactive) in regulating Silicon Valley, the EU has picked up the mantle. The laws it enacts may help break up these digital mega-monopolies but also come at a time when the global economy is in a vulnerable state.