The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) of UK has launched a detailed investigation into dominance of tech giants Facebook and Google in digital marketing. It said this week that it will access if these firms have an unfair advantage and are causing harm to consumers and competition in digital ad market. It is concentrating on these two firms as they together own revenues of nearly 61 % of digital advertising in the country. This investigation is a step by government for strict supervision of large tech firms that are facing scrutiny of regulators across the world over size of consumers and their online data.
The CMA stated that it was examining queries that consumers on these platforms do not have control over how their data is monetized. It will also examine if the dominance of both these organization in the world of digital advertising is limiting entry and competition from other service providers. Though these platforms do not charge anything for their search services in a competitive space though consumers may have to pay for use they will have better control over how their data is used. The investigation is based on a government review published during March which recommended that large tech firms should be subjected to antitrust laws.
The report had claimed that tech firms like Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Google and Microsoft are stifling competition by their dominating power over the internet. The panel wanted to setup a new regulator that would implement rules and establish a code of conduct which enabled fair competition in the market. Finance minister of UK Philip Hammond told the CMA to carry out detailed investigation of digital advertising market after the publication of the government review. The investigation said CMA would be completed within year and details of its findings would be published by July 2, 2020.
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