SaveSave story

EU and US leaders differ on tech competition policy

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.”

SaveSave story

D.C.'s March for our Lives: "The voters are coming"

Protestor at D.C.'s March for our Lives.
Protestor at D.C.'s March for our Lives. Photo: Stef Kight / Axios

D.C.'s March for our Lives event is expected to see more than half a million participants.

Why it matters: While D.C. is the primary march, there are hundreds of others around the world and across the country. Led by students, the march is "to demand that a comprehensive and effective bill be immediately brought before Congress to address" gun issues, per the organization's mission statement.

Haley Britzky 5 hours ago
SaveSave story

DOJ eyeing tool to allow access to encrypted data on smartphones

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

The Justice Department is in "a preliminary stage" of discussions about requiring tech companies building "tools into smartphones and other devices" that would allow law enforcement investigators to access encrypted data, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: This has been on the FBI's mind since 2010, and last month the White House "circulated a memo...outlining ways to think about solving the problem," officials told the Times. Both FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, support finding ways for law enforcement to access data without compromising devices security.