This piece originally appeared in the Washington Examiner.
Not two months after Amazon sued the European Commission for unfairly targeting American companies, the commission has once again demonstrated its dedication to protectionism. European regulators recently designated six companies, Alphabet , Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta, and Microsoft, as “gatekeepers” under the Digital Markets Act, subjecting them alone to strict rules designed to increase competition.
The Digital Markets Act was supposed to be impartial, but when five of the six companies targeted under it are American, it’s hard not to wonder whether the European Commission is approaching tech regulation fairly. The United States must step up before Brussels becomes the de facto tech regulator of the world.
The targeting of American companies under the DMA is merely the latest example of Europe’s partisan treatment of our tech industry. One of the most obvious examples of European tech protectionism is the enforcement of the General Data Protection Regulation. Unlike the DMA and DSA, which have size thresholds for enforcement, the GDPR applies relatively equally to all companies that collect and process the personal data of European consumers. While GDPR devastated Europe’s innovation ecosystem, at least it was written in a neutral way.