The Antitrust Week In Review
Here are some of the developments in antitrust news this past week that we found interesting and are following.
Antitrust Scrutiny for 3 Big U.S. Theater Chains. A federal investigation into whether the big movie theater chains are misusing their market clout to keep new films away from independent competitors is gaining steam. Cinemark Holdings, the nation’s third-largest movie theater operator, disclosed in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it had received a civil investigative demand for information from the antitrust division of the Justice Department. Cinemark’s two bigger competitors, Regal Entertainment Group and AMC Entertainment, have already alerted shareholders to similar requests.
Privacy app maker files EU antitrust complaint against Google. U.S. tech firm Disconnect has filed a complaint with EU antitrust regulators against Google’s ban on its privacy app, accusing the Silicon Valley giant of abusing its dominant market position. Disconnect, which was set up four years ago by former Google engineers, says its app protects users of the Android operating system from invisible tracking and malware distributed through advertisements. Disconnect claims that Google abused its position by blocking the app from the Google Play store last year, and gained an unfair advantage over competitors by integrating its own privacy and security services into its own products.
Motorola’s Antitrust Lawsuit May Head to Top Court. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to announce later this month whether it will review a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit tossing out a civil antitrust suit by Motorola Mobility seeking damages from AU Optronics and other members of an alleged price-fixing cartel. The appeals court held that Motorola’s overseas subsidiaries could not reap the benefits of America’s antitrust laws. The decision, authored by prominent legal theorist Judge Richard A. Posner, has engendered a lively debate by antitrust scholars over the global reach of America’s antitrust laws.