Breakout Session | 10:30 a.m.
The Competition Debate: Is Big Tech Good for America?
Is big tech good for America? What kind of behavior deserves competition regulation and what sort of standards should be used to evaluate when it’s appropriate for the government to act? Some are calling for a rethinking of the current (consumer welfare) standard to address their concerns regarding large tech companies while others oppose this change, arguing it is an objective measure the limits political interference. Should we place new limits on mergers and acquisitions? Do the benefits of connecting Americans and businesses of all sizes to reach each other outweigh the costs?
James Pethokoukis, a columnist and policy analyst, is the Dewitt Wallace Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, where he writes and edits the AEIdeas blog.
Before joining AEI, he was the Washington columnist for Reuters “Breakingviews,” the opinion and commentary wing of Thomson Reuters, and the business editor and economics columnist for US News & World Report.
Ryan is Public Knowledge's General Counsel, overseeing major organizational legal and policy initiatives. Previously, Ryan was an IP litigator at Faegre Baker Daniels LLP in Denver. Before that, he served as counsel to Representative Zoe Lofgren of California, with a focus on intellectual property, internet, and competition policy. He has also practiced antitrust law, represented death row inmates in post-conviction proceedings, worked on several congressional campaigns, and taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Colorado Law School.
Diana Moss became the President of the American Antitrust Institute in January 2015. An economist, Dr. Moss has developed and expanded AAI’s advocacy channels and strategies, and strengthened communications with enforcers, Congress, other advocacy groups, and the media. Her work spans both antitrust and regulation, with industry expertise in electricity, petroleum, agriculture, airlines, telecommunications, and healthcare. Before joining AAI in 2001, Dr. Moss was at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, where she coordinated the agency’s competition analysis for electricity mergers. From 1989 to 1994, she consulted in private practice in the areas of regulation and antitrust. Dr. Moss has spoken widely on various topics involving competition policy and enforcement, testified before Congress, appeared before state and federal regulatory commissions, and made numerous radio and television appearances. She has published articles in a number of economic and legal academic journals, including: American Economic Review, Journal of Industrial Organization, the Energy Law Journal, and the Antitrust Bulletin. She is editor of Network Access, Regulation and Antitrust (2005). Dr. Moss is Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Economics at the University of Colorado at Boulder. She holds a M.A. degree from the University of Denver and a Ph.D. from the Colorado School of Mines.
Will Rinehart is Director of Technology and Innovation Policy at the American Action Forum.
Rinehart specializes in telecommunication, Internet, and data policy, with a focus on emerging technologies and innovation. He comes to the Forum from TechFreedom, where he was a Research Fellow. He was also previously the Director of Operations at the International Center for Law & Economics.
In 2009, Rinehart was a Koch Summer Fellow at The Progress & Freedom Foundation, concentrating on advertising policy and Internet governance. In 2008, he was a Research Associate at the Illinois Policy Institute, where he studied state-level budget, energy and tax issues. Additionally, he worked for the Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement as the Research Assistant in Technology and Civic Engagement.
Rinehart is currently a Fellow at the Internet Law & Policy Foundry. Additionally, he serves on the Federal Communications Commission’s Broadband Deployment Committee and Consumer Advocacy Committee.
Adam Thierer is a Senior Research Fellow with the Technology Policy Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He specializes in technology, media, Internet, and free-speech policies, with a particular focus on online safety and digital privacy. His writings have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Economist, the Washington Post, the Atlantic, and Forbes, and he has appeared on national television and radio. Thierer is a frequent guest lecturer and has testified numerous times on Capitol Hill.
Thierer has authored or edited eight books on topics ranging from media regulation and child safety issues to the role of federalism in high-technology markets. His latest book is Permissionless Innovation: The Continuing Case for Comprehensive Technological Freedom.
He contributes to the Technology Liberation Front, a leading tech policy blog. Thierer has served on several distinguished online safety task forces, including Harvard University’s Internet Safety Technical Task Force and the federal government’s Online Safety Technology Working Group.
Previously, Thierer was president of the Progress & Freedom Foundation, director of telecommunications studies at the Cato Institute, and a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation. Thierer received his MA in international business management and trade theory at the University of Maryland and his BA in journalism and political philosophy from Indiana University.