June 17 (UPI) — Facebook and Google sent a letter to the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday confirming that their chief executives have agreed to testify before Congress about antitrust investigations into the technology industry,media reported. Coupled with Amazon’s previous statements, apple is now among the big four in the Us.
In a letter to the House Judiciary Committee, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, and Sundar Pichai, Google’s chief executive, both pledged to attend the hearing in person. The House Judiciary Committee has been investigating the big technology companies since last year.
If the hearing goes ahead as planned, it could represent the highest-profile and most high-profile public inquiry of the tech industry’s most powerful chief executives. The hearing will raise special concerns as federal agencies continue to investigate whether Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google threaten competition and harm corporate competitors and consumers in the process.
Facebook and Google declined to comment, while Apple did not respond to requests for comment. A spokesman for David Cicilline, chairman of the House Antitrust Committee, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In a letter to leaders of the House Judiciary Committee, Facebook and Google said they would also agree to the chief executive’s participation as long as the top leaders of other tech giants attend edifying, according to people familiar with the matter. Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s chief executive, is also understood to have said he would attend the hearing.
Meanwhile, Apple has told the House Judiciary Committee that it will send executives to the hearing, but has not explicitly promised whether its chief executive, Tim Cook, will be in person, according to people familiar with the matter. Such an approach could exacerbate tensions between Apple and members of Congress, forcing the latter to take enforcement action. Previously, for example, Congress had threatened to issue a subpoena to Bezos to force him to attend the hearing.
Members of the House of Representatives have asked Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google to hand over large amounts of records in antitrust investigations. The commission opened an antitrust investigation last year to examine the business practices of Silicon Valley technology companies and determine whether federal competition laws are keeping pace with the times.
Sislin, the head of the investigation, said he plans to publish a report this year that is expected to recommend new regulatory or other action against Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google.
The congressional investigation complements a series of ongoing investigations by the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). U.S. Justice Department leaders are expected to file an antitrust lawsuit against Google this summer, and multiple state attorneys general are investigating the search and advertising giant.