Lucid, highly readable, and full of rich social and political implications, “The Antitrust Paradox” illustrates how the purpose and integrity of law can be subverted. Winter Robert Bork, The Antitrust Paradox: A Policy at. War with Itself. Paul H. Brietzke. This Book Review is brought to you for free and open access by the. Jan 3, In his highly influential work, The Antitrust Paradox, Robert Bork asserted that the sole normative objective of antitrust should be to maximize.

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Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox

Moreover, this approach would better protect the range of interests that Congress sought to promote through preserving competitive markets, as described in Section II.

As described above, one option is to govern dominant platforms through promoting competition, thereby limiting the power that any one actor accrues.

In this way, the current antitrust regime has yet bodk reckon with the fact that firms with concentrated control over data can systematically tilt a market in their favor, dramatically reshaping the sector.

That a huge share of consumer retail data may be concentrated within a single company makes hacks of or technical failures by that company all the more disruptive. The depth atitrust degree of this influence became apparent in Matsushita Electric Industrial Co.

This is not dead-weight loss due to restriction of output but merely a shift in income between two classes of consumers.

Given that Amazon increasingly serves as essential infrastructure across the internet economy, applying elements of obrk utility regulations to its business is worth considering.

Heaps of scholarship delve into this legislative history.

United States, 22 U. However, the economics of online retailing are not quite like traditional shoe retailing. Several Congressmen advocated for the Federal Trade Commission Act because it would help promote small business. The degree to which a firm can tailor and personalize an online shopping experience is different in kind from the methods available to a brick-and-mortar store—precisely because the type of behavior that online firms can track is far more detailed and nuanced.


If we take the former approach, we should reform antitrust law to prevent this dominance from emerging or to limit its scope.

Its clothing sales are greater than the combined online sales of its five largest online apparel c…. Companies may exploit their market power in a host of competition-distorting ways that do not directly lead to short-term price and output effects.

Traditionally, publishing houses used a cross-subsidization model whereby they would use their best sellers to subsidize weightier and riskier books requiring greater upfront investment. The firm has used this edge to expand wildly and dominate online commerce. My library Help Advanced Book Search. Third, predation can lead to a host of market harms even if the firm does not raise consumer prices.

This approach would permit the company to maintain its involvement across multiple lines of business and permit it to enjoy the benefits of scale while mitigating the concern that Amazon could unfairly advantage its own business or unfairly discriminate among platform users to gain leverage or market power.

See supra Section IV. PosnerAntitrust Law: And Never the Twain Shall Meet?

Yale Law Journal – Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox

Amazon intervened and made an aggressive counteroffer. See generally ProMarkethttp: Rate setting would be trickier.

The consumer welfare model, which views consumers as a collectivity, does not take this income effect into account. If we would not submit to an emperor, we should not submit to an autocrat of trade, vork power to prevent competition and to fix the price of any commodity. By instead relying primarily on price and output effects as metrics of competition, enforcers risk overlooking the structural weakening of competition until it becomes difficult to address effectively, an approach that undermines consumer welfare.

They are squashing competition, and they are using the darker arts of management to stay ahead.

The Antitrust Paradox – Wikipedia

Second, critics portrayed public utility as a form of corruption, a system in which private industry executives colluded with public officials to enable rent seeking. But it is worth noting that a new group of scholars at the University of Chicago—such as Luigi Zingales and Guy Rolnik —have departed from the neoclassical approach and are studying market competition with an eye to power.


Predatory Pricing Through the mid-twentieth century, Congress repeatedly enacted legislation targeting predatory pricing. An approach that took these factors seriously would involve an assessment of how a market is structured and whether a single firm had acquired sufficient power to distort competitive outcomes.

D, is an example of this dynamic. To be sure, this dynamic is not intrinsically anticompetitive. Control over data may also make it easier for dominant platforms to enter new markets with greater ease.

In a striking speech welcoming the public and political attention towards antitrust, Assistant Att…. Even if a firm viewed the unmet demand as an invitation to enter, several factors would prove discouraging in ways that the existing doctrine does not consider.

Interests of consumers have been a recurrent concern because consumers have been perceived as victims of the abuse of too much power.

The Chicago School approach bases its vision of industrial organization on a simple theoretical premise: This form of prophylactic ban has a long history in banking law. Utah Pie brought a predatory pricing case against Continental. Thus mistaken inferences in cases such as this one are especially costly, because they chill the very conduct the antitrust laws are designed to protect.

It was precisely because essential network industries often required scale that unregulated private control over these sectors often led to abuse of monopoly power. Focusing on these metrics instead blinds us to the potential hazards. GrunesBig Data and Competition Policy See Oversight of the Enforcement of the Antitrust Laws: Stockholders have pushed Amazon shares up to a record level, even though the company makes only pocket change.

Although platforms form the backbone of the internet economy, the way that platform economics implicates existing laws is relatively undertheorized.

See Rachael King, Salesforce.