Headline RoundupSeptember 27th, 2023

Will the FTC’s Amazon Lawsuit Protect or Harm Consumers?

Summary from AllSides News Team

The Federal Trade Commission and 17 states sued Amazon for allegedly “illegally maintaining monopoly power.”

The Details: An FTC statement says the regulator targeted Amazon “not because it is big, but because it engages in a course of exclusionary conduct that prevents current competitors from growing and new competitors from emerging.” Amazon’s anticompetitive tactics allegedly include “anti-discounting measures that punish sellers and deter other online retailers from offering prices lower than Amazon,” as well as “deliberately increasing junk ads” and “charging costly fees on the hundreds of thousands of sellers that currently have no choice but to rely on Amazon to stay in business.” In response, Amazon said the FTC was “wrong on the facts and the law.”

For Context: FTC Chair Lina Khan has long been an outspoken critic of Amazon, which the FTC also sued in June for allegedly tricking millions of people into signing up for Amazon Prime. 

“Wasteful” Vendetta: Two guest writers for the New York Post (Opinion rated Right) said the lawsuit was “guided more by desire and ideology than a reasonable assessment of the costs and benefits.” They argue it “might help competitors, but it would do so by hurting the very services Amazon consumers have come to rely on.”

“It’s Showtime”: Multiple opinion articles in Bloomberg (Lean Left bias) defended the lawsuit from accusations that it was part of Khan’s purported “vendetta.” One writer argued that despite the failure of previous FTC actions, Amazon was “clearly abusing the market” with its “top-to-bottom control of e-commerce.”

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