US government effort to regulate Big Tech stalls

US government effort to regulate Big Tech stalls

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App Store faces barrage of antitrust charges
Support is lagging for a centerpiece of U.S. government efforts to regulate Big Tech.
Photo: Sora Shimazaki/Pexels CC

A bill aimed at regulating Big Tech is reportedly losing support in the U.S. Senate. The fate of the American Choice and Innovation Online Act is now in question.

It is a Democratic proposal but some Senate Democrats are leery about voting for it in an election year.

Bill to regulate Big Tech may quietly die

The American Choice and Innovation Online Act seeks to stop big platforms from advantaging their own products or services over those made by others. That could affect Apple, which not only owns and operates the App Store, but also makes software that competes with some of the apps distributed through said store.

But Apple isn’t the only focus. The bill would affect Amazon Prime and Google Docs as well.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer wants to put the bill up for a vote, but support is questionable. “Several Democratic senators have privately expressed deep reservations about voting for the legislation, particularly with a midterm election looming,” reports Politico.

With the Senate evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats, passage of any bill without broad support is in doubt.

Polls show voters generally support additional regulation for Big Tech. But it is still a controversial issue, especially with Apple and others strongly lobbying against the regulation.

Some Senators showing lukewarm support for the American Choice and Innovation Online Act think legislators should be putting their efforts into reigning in inflation, not Big Tech, as the 2022 midterm elections loom.