Dec 4, 2017

Tim Wu's new book calls for tighter antitrust enforcement

Columbia University law professor Tim Wu is a longtime skeptic of corporate power. Photo: Seth Wenig / AP

The man who coined the term "net neutrality" is now calling for "a return to sort of Progressive Era style antitrust enforcement that is focused on concentration and size."

Columbia University law professor Tim Wu tapped into the tech policy zeitgeist with his books The Master Switch, about corporate power in the information age, and the more recent Attention Merchants. In The Curse of Bigness Revisited (a working title) Wu plans to make his case for tighter regulation. Wu hopes to have the book out by spring.

The bigger picture: Antitrust is a hot topic right now. Hill Democrats are working tougher merger enforcement into their midterm platform. And skepticism of corporate power — especially in tech — is an animating force on both sides of the ideological divide.

Axios asked Wu

what the audience was for the book. "I think there are members of the public who will get into it, but it is probably a little more … I think it's accessible to anyone who feels inspired by the works of Louis Brandeis," he said, after speaking at a briefing put on by progressives in Congress. "It's kind of trying to reinvigorate the Brandeis vision of small producers, smaller economy, innovation and self-determination."

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China tries to contain coronavirus, as Apple warns of earnings impact

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's NHC; Note: China refers to mainland China and the Diamond Princess is the cruise ship offshore Yokohama, Japan. Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

As China pushes to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus — placing around 780 million people under travel restrictions, per CNN — the economic repercussions continue to be felt globally as companies like Apple warn of the impact from the lack of manufacturing and consumer demand in China.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,775 people and infected more than 70,000 others, mostly in mainland China. There are some signs that new cases are growing at a slower rate now, although the World Health Organization said Monday it's "too early to tell" if this will continue.

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Apple will miss quarterly earnings estimates due to coronavirus

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple issued a rare earnings warning on Monday, saying it would not meet quarterly revenue expectations due to the impact of the coronavirus, which will limit iPhone production and limit product demand in China.

Why it matters: Lots of companies rely on China for production, but unlike most U.S. tech companies, Apple also gets a significant chunk of its revenue from sales in China.

America's dwindling executions

The Trump administration wants to reboot federal executions, pointing to a 16-year lapse, but Pew Research reports the government has only executed three people since 1963.

The big picture: Nearly all executions in the U.S. are done by states. Even those have been steadily dropping for two decades, per the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) — marking a downward trend for all executions in the country.