The Economist recently announced that the world’s most valuable resource is now data, displacing oil for the top spot.  The “titans” of the digital era—Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft—look “unstoppable” as they are now the five “most valuable” firms in the world.  Amazon captures “half of all dollars” spent online, and Google and Facebook accounted for “almost all the revenue growth in digital advertising in America last year.”  The Economist claims that the “abundance” of data “changes the nature of competition,” and in particular that “with data there are extra network effects” (emphasis added).  Ultimately, they declare, “antitrust authorities need to move from the industrial era into the 21st Century.”  These statements are interesting, worth thinking about but basically wrong.  Big data is about your personal preferences, perhaps even your thoughts and future actions, being for sale.  It is about your privacy, not about competition.

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Bill MacLeod, chair of the American Bar Association’s Antitrust Section and Kelley Drye partner, addressed the Section with an introductory note to their eighth sequential Presidential Transition Report. The 2017 Presidential Transition Report offers a retrospective of current state and federal antitrust and consumer protection law and policy, as well as recommendations for ways