Headline, February 28 2024/ SOUTH KOREA : ''' BIG TECH BIN '''


''' BIG TECH BIN '''

! FIRST AND FOREMOST ! THE WORLD STUDENTS SOCIETY is the exclusive and eternal ownership of every student of South Korea just as it is of every student in the world. ''Welcome All to !WOW!''.

SOUTH KOREA TOOK AIM AT BIG TECH. Then came the backlash. The South Korean government unleashed a wave of panic across the internet industry :

The country's antitrust regulators said it would enact the toughest competition law outside Europe, curbing the influence of major technology companies.

The Korea Fair Trade Commission, with the backing of President Yoon Suk Yeol, said in December that it planned to make a proposal modeled after the 2022 Digital Markets Act, the European Union's landmark to rein in American tech giants.

This bill also seemed to take aim at South Korea's own internet conglomerates just as much as the Alphabets, Apples and Metas of the world.

IN South Korea, Naver, not Google, is a preferred search engine and map service. Coupang has emerged as the dominant player in e-commerce with efficient deliveries, and Kakao is a ubiquitous messaging service in the country, with a stronghold in ride hailing.

In the past, it was American tech giants that accused the country's regulators of overreach. But this time, Korean firms led the protest. Park Seong-ho, chairman of the Korean Internet Corporations Association, known as K-Internet, said the regulation would limit growth opportunities.

The group's members include Naver, Kakao, Coupang and the Korean units of Alphabet and Meta.

'' A dominant platform here will be replaced by another in a matter of years, and this cycle will repeat,'' Mr. Park said. '' It's like prematurely preventing a large, strong student with the potential to become an athlete from training out of fear he will become a bully.''

The European Union's Digital Markets Act, which will soon take effect next month, restrains the clout of so-called gatekeeper platforms that offer dominant technology services.

Companies like Apple, Amazon, Alphabet Meta and Microsoft have announced changes in how they operate to comply with the new rules.

But unlike South Korea, Europe does have thriving homegrown technology giants whose businesses may be challenged by regulation.

Han-Ki-jeong, chairman of the Korea Fair Trade Commission, said in a written statement to The New York Times that the new regulations were necessary.

While the country's digital economy has flourished, he said, '' behind the innovative services and rapid growth lies frequent abuse of power by a small number of market-monopolizing platforms.''

Naver, Kakao and Alphabet declined to comment on the possible regulation.

The proposal, known as the Platform Competition Promotion Act, reflects Mr. Yoons on evolution on how aggressively to oversee tech companies. Two years ago, he campaigned on the principle of ''self-regulation'' and minimal government intervention.

South Korea's dependence on a web of interconnected services became clear when a fire at a facility housing Kakao's servers knocked its services offline for more than a day in late 2022, disrupting communication across the country.

At the time, Mr. Yoon said his administration would investigate whether Kakao was a monopoly and whether it needed to be  regulated like '' nationwide infrastructure.''

In November, Mr.Yoon called Kakao's ride-hailing app a ''tyranny'' and ''unethical'' because it abused its monopoly status. He said Kakao Mobility Corporation, a majority-owned unit of Kakao. had gotten rid of competitors by offering low prices, only to raise them again after becoming a monopoly.

He asked the commission to come up with measures to prevent abuses by dominant tech companies.

Kim Min-ho, a law professor Sungkyunkwan University, said the shift in Mr. Yoon's position was probably tied to the upcoming election in April, where his party will look to win over small business owners, taxi drivers and delivery service workers who have been supportive of the opposition party's position to regulate large technology companies.

The Honour and Serving of the Latest Global Operational Research on Markets, Laws, Big Tech and Regulations continues. The World Students Society thanks authors Jin Yu Young and Daisuke Wakabayashi.

With most respectful dedication to the Leaders, Students, Professors and Teachers of South Korea and then the world.

See You all prepare for Great Global Elections on The World Students Society -lovingly and respectfully called !WOW! - the eternal and exclusive ownership of every student in the world : wssciw.blogspot.com and Twitter X !E-WOW! - The Ecosystem 2011 :

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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