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Competition in digital markets

Big Tech companies such as Google, Apple or Amazon control access to online platforms and digital ecosystems. They often strengthen their own market position by impeding competitors and restricting consumers’ freedom of choice.

For instance, they give preferential treatment to their own products and services or excessively collect consumers’ data. This weakens competition, hampers innovation and leads to higher consumer prices (also in the form of data).

After the reform of German competition rules (GWB Digitalisation Act), the European Commission’s Digital Markets Act (DMA) imposes self-executing obligations on gatekeeper platforms. E.g., to prohibiting unfair treatment of users and practices undermining competition in markets, such as self-preferencing.

This increases consumers’ choice, for example when gatekeeper platforms may no longer prevent consumers from deleting pre-installed software applications or using alternative app stores.

vzbv demands

  • a swift application of the DMA to prevent further damage to competition and consumers
  • European Commission needs sufficient resources in order to take swift action against gatekeepers
  • Consumer representatives must be involved in decisions against gatekeepers
  • authorities must take swift action against manipulation of user decisions ("dark patterns") by gatekeepers

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Ex ante regulatory instrument for large online plattforms and a new competition tool | Feedback of vzbv | 8 September 2020

Ex ante regulatory instrument for large online plattforms and a new competition tool | Feedback of vzbv | 8 September 2020

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