FTC Files Antitrust Lawsuit to Stop Microsoft From Acquiring Activision
The Federal Trade Commission sued Microsoft on Thursday to stop the tech giant’s acquisition of video game publisher Activision Blizzard.
Key Quotes: In a statement, the FTC said, “With control over Activision’s blockbuster franchises, Microsoft would have both the means and motive to harm competition by manipulating Activision’s pricing, degrading Activision’s game quality or player experience on rival consoles and gaming services, changing the terms and timing of access to Activision’s content, or withholding content from competitors entirely, resulting in harm to consumers.” Meanwhile, Microsoft Vice Chair and President Brad Smith said, “We have been committed since Day One to addressing competition concerns, including by offering earlier this week proposed concessions to the FTC. While we believe in giving peace a chance, we have complete confidence in our case and welcome the opportunity to present it in court.”
For Context: The lawsuit against the $68.7 billion deal comes after years of anticipation of antitrust action against Big Tech — partly fueled by FTC Chair Lina Khan, an outspoken critic of Amazon. Microsoft’s Xbox console is a major player in the increasingly popular video game industry, and some future games developed by other Microsoft-owned studios are expected to be made exclusive to its platform.
How the Media Covered It: Coverage was widespread across the spectrum, particularly in business outlets, which tend to be rated Lean Left or Center. Some coverage described the lawsuit as “aggressive” or a “landmark battle.”
Featured Coverage of this Story
From the LeftThe FTC is suing Microsoft to block its Activision Blizzard purchase
The FTC has filed a legal challenge to try and block Microsoft’s plan to buy Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion, according to a press release from the regulator. The lawsuit was filed today after weeks of back and forth between Microsoft, Sony, and regulators over competition concerns and the future of Call of Duty. The FTC argues that the acquisition would “enable Microsoft to suppress competitors to its Xbox gaming consoles and its rapidly growing subscription content and cloud-gaming business.”
The vote from the FTC commissioners today means Microsoft now faces significant...
From the RightMicrosoft's big buy of Activision may be blocked by Federal Trade Commission
The Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint on Thursday, suing Microsoft’s anticipated takeover of the video game company Activision Blizzard, valued at $69 billion.
The FTC claims the deal could give Microsoft’s Xbox game console and game subscription business an unfair advantage over its competitors.
In a press release issued by the FTC, the vote to file a complaint was 3-1, which Rep. Commissioner Christine S. Wilson voting against the measure.
Previously, Microsoft acquired game developer Bethesda Softworks and its parent company ZeniMax. Under those platforms, Microsoft will make certain game titles exclusive...
From the CenterFTC sues to block Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard
The Federal Trade Commission on Thursday filed an antitrust case against Microsoft to challenge the software maker’s attempt to acquire video game publisher Activision Blizzard, claiming it would violate U.S. law.
This isn’t Microsoft’s first time dealing with competitive pressure. In 1998 the U.S. Justice Department filed a broad antitrust case against the company. Microsoft changed some practices related to its Windows operating system business as a result. Regulators in the United Kingdom are looking into whether the Activision Blizzard acquisition would lessen competition in the country.
Microsoft announced plans to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion...