The European Union flags waving in Brussels, Belgium. Photo: Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Comments from experts and tech leaders at this year's South by Southwest festival were a reminder that Europe's aggressive competition enforcement policies are viewed very differently on either side of the Atlantic.

Why it matters: Large tech companies like Facebook and Google are under increased scrutiny in the U.S., but the European Union has long been much more aggressive in curbing what it sees as anti-competitive behaviors.

The U.S. view: "The Europeans go after big successful companies... using very ambiguous anti-competitive laws," said Consumer Technology Association chief Gary Shapiro during a panel.

The E.U. view: "There’s nothing wrong with being large," said Julie Brill, Microsoft deputy general counsel and former FTC Commissioner, during a different panel. She added that the problem is when a large marketshare is "used in inappropriate ways and used to further benefit the monopolist."

"We’re not in a beauty contest of being more aggressive than another," echoed Damien Levie, who heads trade and agriculture at the E.U.'s American embassy. "We look at conduct cases of what we call abuse of dominant position.”

Go deeper

Elliott Abrams to replace Brian Hook as Trump's Iran envoy

Brian Hook. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Image

President Trump's Iran envoy, Brian Hook, is stepping down, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo confirmed Thursday. He will be replaced with Venezuela envoy Elliott Abrams, a noted Iran hawk who will serve in both roles.

Why it matters: Hook had been tasked with executing Trump's "maximum pressure" policy toward Iran, working closely with Pompeo. That strategy has deepened tensions and thus far failed to force Iran back to the negotiating table, as Trump had hoped.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tests positive for coronavirus ahead of Trump visit

Photo: Justin Merriman/Getty Images

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine (R) has tested positive for COVID-19 and plans to quarantine at his home for the next 14 days, his office announced Thursday. He currently has no symptoms.

Why it matters: The 73-year-old DeWine was set to meet President Trump Thursday on the tarmac at an airport in Cleveland and was tested as part of standard protocol. He is the second governor known to have contracted the coronavirus, after Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt (R).

Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12:30 p.m. ET: 18,860,908 — Total deaths: 708,676— Total recoveries — 11,394,821Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12:30 p.m. ET: 4,834,546 — Total deaths: 158,445 — Total recoveries: 1,577,851 — Total tests: 58,920,975Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi rips GOP: "Perhaps you mistook them for somebody who gives a damn" — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tests positive.
  4. Public health: Fauci says task force will examine aerosolized spread.
  5. Business: July's jobs report could be an inflection point for the recovery — Teladoc and Livongo merge into virtual care giant.
  6. Sports: Where college football's biggest conferences stand on playing.