Sokol on A Framework for Digital Platform Regulation

D. Daniel Sokol (USC Gould School of Law; USC Marshall School of Business) has posted “A Framework for Digital Platform Regulation” (Competition Law International Vol 17 2021) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

In rapid succession, a number of jurisdictions have moved away from focusing on antitrust enforcement to the proposed regulation of digital platforms. Ostensibly, the regulatory focus is about competition and potential concerns that traditional ex post enforcement may be ill-equipped to address the power of digital platforms. This article focuses on the realities of what platform regulation might mean, and how to better frame and structure the nature of appropriate regulation. This article first identifies a number of the different approaches to regulation that various jurisdictions have put forward, and then lays out six basic principles for platform regulation to help address some of the potential harms that such approaches may unwittingly be pursuing. Without guiding principles, platform regulation will be counter-productive by destroying the value creating aspects of platforms – stifling innovation, increasing prices and potentially distorting non-price factors of competition such as quality.