Google and Amazon Rouse Support from Small Vendors Against Tech Legislation: Report

January 4th, 2022 1:45 PM

Tech giants Google and Amazon are reportedly calling on local governments and small businesses to warn lawmakers against supporting antitrust legislation affecting Big Tech. The U.S. House and Senate are pushing bipartisan bills on the matter amid the companies' lobbying efforts.

Government institutions such as local chambers of commerce in areas with Amazon and Google centers have contacted congressional representatives, according to Politico. Small businesses that rely on Amazon’s selling platform have also reportedly signed petitions, utilized email blasts, and obtained or participated in Zoom calls with lawmakers. 

These operations are apparently frightened that Google’s and Amazon’s business models will be permanently harmed by proposed legislation; for instance, by making Amazon Prime or Google Docs more limited.

One bill Amazon has reportedly targeted is S. 2992 (117), co-sponsored by multiple senators, including pro-censorship Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN). The bill would prevent giants like Amazon from discriminating against third-party rivals using their platforms or favoring their own products, according to Politico

Inspire Travel Luggage founder Kristin Rae is one of many small business owners who rely heavily on Amazon for customers. Several of these sellers are actively speaking out on Amazon’s behalf, Politico wrote.

Rae reportedly met with lawmakers from her state via Zoom to discuss the potential damage legislation could do to Amazon’s current business model, and perhaps her own. Amazon featured Rae in a blog post in the past. “It was like it was written by somebody who didn't understand e-commerce,” Rae stated of S. 2992 (117), according to Politico.

About two dozen lawmakers, including Congressmen Ken Buck (R-CO) and David Cicilline (D-RI), co-sponsored the House version of Klobuchar and Grassley’s bill: H.R. 3816 (117). “[Tech giants are] using scare tactics to try to gain favor with this bill,” Buck said, according to Politico.

While he indicated that Amazon and Google were wrong in saying that the antitrust bills will harm small businesses, Buck also saw the “scare tactics” as being possibly successful, Politico wrote. The House Judiciary Committee approved an entire package of tech-focused bills in June.

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