Taking Innovation Seriously: Antitrust Enforcement If Innovation Mattered Most
16 Pages Posted: 25 Oct 2012
Date Written: February 14, 2012
Now is a particularly important time to consider the relationship between antitrust and innovation. Both US and European antitrust en forcement authorities are taking a look at the state of competition on the Internet, an inquiry that puts into clear focus the need for antitrust to take seriously its relationship with innovation policy.
How would the enforcement of antitrust look if the promotion of innovation were its paramount concern? I present 3 suggestions: (1) law enforcement would be primarily concerned with the exclusion of competitors. (2) A competition law centered on promoting innovation would take very seriously its oversight of "innovation catalysts." Oversight of standard setting, platforms, and patents would be of paramount importance. (3) The timing of intervention would become a more crucial issue than it is today — as a matter of prosecutorial discretion considered independent of illegality.
Keywords: innovation, antitrust, internet, patents, standard setting, platforms, exclusion, competition law
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