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Can Biden really crack down on tech monopolies?


Vijay Sundaram

Vijay Sundaram is the chief strategy officer of Zoho Corporation, a business software company that competes with the tech giants and puts consumer privacy at the forefront of its policies.

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We must end the era of adjunct surveillance

President Joe Biden issued an executive order in July “promoting competition” in the U.S. economy. The order calls out Big Tech specifically, stating that “today a small number of dominant Internet platforms use their power to exclude market entrants, to extract monopoly profits, and to gather intimate personal information that they can exploit for their own advantage.”
In November, the U.S. Senate introduced a bill targeting anti-competitive acquisitions among tech companies. There has not been a meaningful monopolization case in the United States for 20 years, but this recent momentum suggests that the current administration would like to make one stick.
To date, there is still too much gray area in the rules and ambivalence among citizens to enforce antitrust law, but with a few changes to the approach, good intentions may lead to new policy, penalties and even prosecution.
Over the last century, antitrust regulation lost its teeth and its broader goals have been abandoned for a nebulous standard around “consumer welfare.” The acid test for antitrust established during the 1980s reduced everything to whether …

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