CONFERENCE: INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY - INTERNET - FREE - DATA - INFLUENCE - COMPETITIVE ANALYSIS

“Free” goods and services: Is there such a thing? (New Frontiers of Antitrust, Paris, 13 June 2016)

Recent years have seen the spread of free services, in particular in the digital area, whose effects on competition are not univocal. The competitive analysis of the provision of free goods and/or services, in particular when they are offered by companies holding a significant market power, is a challenging task for competition authorities which raises the question of the relevance of traditional analytical tools as well as that of the regulatory framework in place. The sensitive issue of personal data collection and processing brings an additional layer of complexity which has to be assessed by competition authorities on a case by case basis, in light of each individual circumstances.

Introduction Bruno Lasserre Chairman, Autorité de la concurrence, Paris 1. L’Internet et les nouvelles technologies de l’information et de la communication irriguent notre quotidien : la plupart d’entre nous sont aujourd’hui “connectés” par défaut, et se séparer, ne fût-ce que quelques instants, de nos outils de communication procède d’un effort délibéré qui nous coûte d’autant plus que la norme sociale et professionnelle est aujourd’hui celle de l’hyperconnectivité. 2. C’est dans ce contexte qu’il convient d’examiner la question de la gratuité : les nouveaux services dématérialisés proposés par les écosystèmes numériques, grands et moins grands, renouvellent les opportunités de monétisation hors du cadre traditionnel d’une tarification à l’usage. L’intitulé de notre table ronde l’évoque sans ambages : si la

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  • French State Council (Paris)

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Bruno Lasserre, “Free” goods and services: Is there such a thing? (New Frontiers of Antitrust, Paris, 13 June 2016), September 2016, Concurrences Review Nº 3-2016, Art. N° 80852, www.concurrences.com

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