Facebook, Google, Amazon to face questions about competition on Capitol Hill

Facebook, Google, Amazon to face questions about competition on Capitol Hill
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Amazon, Google and Facebook will reportedly be invited to Capitol Hill for questioning by lawmakers on whether the tech giants hurt the competitive landscape for small businesses.

House Small Business Committee Chairwoman Nydia Velázquez (D-N.Y.) plans to ask the companies to attend a hearing in October or November, Bloomberg News reported Tuesday.

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“Chairwoman Velázquez believes that small businesses deserve to compete on a level playing field and hopes the hearing will be an opportunity for the committee to examine how small businesses are faring given the dominance of big tech companies in areas ranging from e-commerce to internet traffic,” her spokeswoman, Evelyn Quartz, told the news outlet.

Velázquez plans to focus on problems encountered by small businesses when they try to compete against the large tech firms or promote themselves on their platforms.

Quartz confirmed the Bloomberg report in a statement to The Hill, noting that invites have not been sent to the tech companies, but that they have been notified of the committee's intention to hold a hearing. 

Spokespeople for Google and Amazon declined to comment on the hearing. Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

The tech giants in recent years have faced increasing scrutiny over their business practices.

The Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department are looking into whether major technology companies have violated antitrust laws and some lawmakers, including top-tier 2020 hopeful Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenNew poll catapults Buttigieg to frontrunner position in Iowa Bloomberg, Patrick take different approaches after late entries into primary race Deval Patrick: a short runway, but potential to get airborne MORE (D-Mass.), have called for breaking up big tech firms.

Updated at 10:55 a.m.