The White House has issued a “fact sheet” listing the industries and policies it’s addressing via an executive order that President Biden will sign later today — and technology is directly in the crosshairs.
That includes internet service providers, as Biden will encourage the Federal Communications Commission to restore net neutrality rules undone during the prior administration, require providers to report prices and subscription rates, and prevent ISPs from making deals with landlords that limit tenants’ choices.
Right-to-repair efforts should get a shot in the arm as the Federal Trade Commission is now tasked with trying to “limit powerful equipment manufacturers from restricting people’s ability to use independent repair shops or do DIY repairs.” It also includes language spurring the FTC to place bans or limit on non-competes that have been common in the tech industry.
And when it comes to Big Tech, the administration’s agenda now specifically includes a mandate to require “greater scrutiny of mergers, especially by dominant internet platforms, with particular attention to the acquisition of nascent competitors, serial mergers, the accumulation of data, competition by ‘free’ products, and the effect on user privacy.” Via the FTC, the Biden administration plans a push to place more rules on surveillance and data collection, which should affect many of the largest tech companies in the world.
In the document, the administration claims that 72 initiatives are being undertaken to promote competition and raise wages, although it will be up to the various agencies, as well as Congress, to provide funding and action to make these things happen.