At the end of last year, it became known that the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) decided to block a deal between Microsoft and Activision Blizzard. The regulator went to court, and now the fate of the deal is being decided in the course of a trial. At the same time, US senators have recently spoken out about the violation of competition by Sony, and not all members of the government are satisfied with the position of the FTC.
As part of the hearings in the US Senate Committee on Energy and Commerce discussed, among other issues, the FTC’s budget for next year. In particular, the head of the FTC, Lina Khan, was also there. Tennessee Congresswoman Diane Harshbarger asked Lina Khan directly as part of the hearing why she is siding with Sony in the Microsoft-Activision Blizzard deal:
I want to know why the FTC is taking action to protect Sony, which owns 68% of the global game console market, protecting them from competitors and competition, and also trying to block the deal between Microsoft and Activision Blizzard. As you know, Sony is the most vocal opponent of this deal. And, rather surprisingly, the FTC took Sony’s side. Can you explain why this happened?
In response, Lina Khan said that the FTC does not take sides in the deal, and the regulator’s decision is independent, they just listen to all parties.