The CEOs of Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Google are ready to testify before Congress as part of the lawmaker’s inquiry into competitive practices in the technology industry.
The news of the CEO’s participation was announced on Twitter by Record co-founder Kara Swisher, but the official confirmation came later on Wednesday from the spokesman for the House Judiciary Committee.
According to the spokesman for the HJC, the hearing is scheduled to take place at the end of this month. However, it remains unclear whether Mark Zuckerberg, Tim Cook, Jeff Bezos, and Sundar Pichai will appear in Congress or provide their testimony virtually.
An investigation into antitrust legislation
Late last year, the House of Judiciary started an inquiry into tech giants to know whether new antitrust legislation is required to ensure fair competition in digital markets. The outcome of the investigation will be vital in proposing new regulatory bills to regulate the industry’s biggest players.
When the probe was launched late last year, the House of Judiciary requested Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google, to provide some internal documents, including executive emails, to facilitate the inquiry. The testimonies from the CEOs could be one of the last steps before the committee concludes the probe.
Last month, Amazon said that Jeff Bezos was willing to testify. Shortly, Google and Facebook made the same commitments. It is reported that the House Judiciary confirmation on Wednesday came after Apple confirmed its CEO, Cook, would be ready to participate.
The process has to go on, anyway
According to Cicilline, lawmakers were particularly keen on obtaining the CEOS’ testimonies. “We are going to get the documents and the witnesses we need to complete the investigation,” Cicilline told Bloomberg in June. “It is my hope that this will happen voluntarily, but it has always been the committee’s intention that if it does not happen voluntarily, we will rely on the compulsory process to do so.”
The tech giants are facing other types of regulatory pressure. The Department of Justice is contemplating filing an antitrust lawsuit against Google. Recently, Apple was hit with two different antitrust inquiries in the EU over its Apple Pay rules and App store.