On Tuesday, a federal judge ruled against the Federal Trade Commission’s attempt to block Microsoft’s acquisition of video game maker Activision Blizzard. The FTC has said it will appeal the ruling. In response, Microsoft Vice Chair and President Brad Smith issued this statement:
“The District Court’s ruling makes crystal clear that this acquisition is good for both competition and consumers. We’re disappointed that the FTC is continuing to pursue what has become a demonstrably weak case, and we will oppose further efforts to delay the ability to move forward.”
For coverage of this development, see Axios, the Verge, and Reuters.
Thank you for reading. You’ll find additional tech policy news and a featured podcast below. In addition, Voices for Innovation recently launched our redesigned website. Please check it out.
This Week in Washington
- CyberScoop: The White House released the first version of its multi-year implementation plan for the National Cybersecurity Strategy. This comes only days after cybersecurity experts signed a joint letter to the Biden administration urging them to nominate a new National Cyber Director by the end of July believing that implementation of the strategy will be delayed if they fail to do so.
- CNBC: The EU-U.S. Data Privacy Framework, a landmark data-sharing pact that aims to ensure data can flow safely between the two superpowers, is facing criticism from privacy activists who are unhappy with the level of protection offered to European citizens.
- The Washington Post: A federal judge’s ruling setting limits on the government’s ability to communicate with tech companies could undermine initiatives in place to protect the social media landscape from false messages ahead of the 2024 election.
- CyberScoop: While lawmakers continue to debate how to regulate and enforce rules around emerging AI technologies, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been using algorithm disgorgement – which requires companies to delete products built on data they shouldn’t have used – as an enforcement tool.
- The Washington Post and CyberScoop: Following Twitter’s move to have the federal court terminate the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) order that puts restrictions on its data security practices, Republican lawmakers sparred with FTC Chair Lina Khan during a hearing on Capitol Hill regarding the decision to monitor the platform, citing “mismanagement” concerns.
- The Hill: Utah Governor Brian Cox is making a move to sue social media platforms for their harm toward children in his state, and he’s introduced legislation that would restrict minors from using social media without parental consent.
- Semafor: The introduction of Threads, Meta’s direct competitor to Twitter, could lead to a legal battle between the two parent tech companies over the functionality of the new social media platform.
- Axios: The Associated Press and OpenAI have reached a two-year deal that will license select news content from AP dating back to 1985 to help train OpenAI’s artificial intelligence algorithms.
- IAMCP NJ on LinkedIn: Hats off to the New Jersey Chapter of the International Association of Microsoft Channel Partners! IAMCP NJ recently awarded its Technology Scholarship to an outstanding graduating senior from Plainfield High School. It’s great to see IAMCP NJ and its members supporting #TechForGood and highlighting the need to support tech education and skilling.
- Bloomberg Technology
Bloomberg’s Caroline Hyde breaks down the latest on Microsoft’s $69b deal for Activision as the companies get a new shot at winning over the UK on the acquisition. Plus, how Meta’s Threads could add $8 billion dollars in revenue within the next two years. (Microsoft’s Activision Deal and Meta’s Threads – July 12, 2023)