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Virtual Competition

Virtual Competition

The Promise and Perils of the Algorithm-Driven Economy

Ariel Ezrachi, Maurice E. Stucke

ISBN 9780674241589

Publication date: 10/29/2019

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“A fascinating book about how platform internet companies (Amazon, Facebook, and so on) are changing the norms of economic competition.”
Fast Company

Shoppers with a bargain-hunting impulse and internet access can find a universe of products at their fingertips. But is there a dark side to internet commerce? This thought-provoking exposé invites us to explore how sophisticated algorithms and data-crunching are changing the nature of market competition, and not always for the better. Introducing into the policy lexicon terms such as algorithmic collusion, behavioral discrimination, and super-platforms, Ariel Ezrachi and Maurice E. Stucke explore the resulting impact on competition, our democratic ideals, our wallets, and our well-being.

“We owe the authors our deep gratitude for anticipating and explaining the consequences of living in a world in which black boxes collude and leave no trails behind. They make it clear that in a world of big data and algorithmic pricing, consumers are outgunned and antitrust laws are outdated, especially in the United States.”
Science

“A convincing argument that there can be a darker side to the growth of digital commerce. The replacement of the invisible hand of competition by the digitized hand of internet commerce can give rise to anticompetitive behavior that the competition authorities are ill equipped to deal with.”
—Burton G. Malkiel, Wall Street Journal

“A convincing case for the need to rethink competition law to cope with algorithmic capitalism’s potential for malfeasance.”
—John Naughton, The Observer

Praise

  • [Ezrachi and Stucke] make a convincing argument that there can be a darker side to the growth of digital commerce. The replacement of the invisible hand of competition by the digitized hand of internet commerce can give rise to anticompetitive behavior that the competition authorities are ill equipped to deal with…Virtual Competition displays a deep understanding of the internet world and is outstandingly researched.

    —Burton G. Malkiel, Wall Street Journal

Authors

  • Ariel Ezrachi is Slaughter and May Professor of Competition Law at the University of Oxford.
  • Maurice E. Stucke is Professor of Law at the University of Tennessee and co-founder of The Konkurrenz Group.

Book Details

  • 368 pages
  • 5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press

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