Edited by Johannes M. Bauer and Michael Latzer
The rapid rise, enduring growth and success of Internet markets and e-commerce platforms have spurred a lively and sometimes heated debate among academics and policy-makers: do Internet markets foster competition or are they prone to concentration, possibly to the point of monopolization? Competition economists and lawyers vigorously discuss the peculiarities of these markets and whether traditional rules and interpretations of competition law are sufficient to deal with potential new competition problems. The cases against search engine Google have received most public and academic attention, closely followed by the e-book case against Apple. In addition, numerous cases concerning vertical restraints in online sales have recently been brought before European courts. These vertical restraints include across-platform parity agreements (APPAs), which are a special form of a most-favored customer clause, general bans on online sales or bans on particular platforms, dual pricing systems, and selective and exclusive distribution systems. This chapter starts with a brief discussion of the peculiarities of online markets and then discusses recent antitrust cases related to the Internet.
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