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Democracy & Technology Blog Twombly shot down

The Supreme Court rejected the argument that a conspiracy in restraint of trade can be inferred from the parallel behavior of competitors.

As to the ILECs’ supposed agreement to disobey the 1996 Act and thwart the CLECs’ attempts to compete, the District Court correctly found that nothing in the complaint intimates that resisting the upstarts was anything more than the natural, unilateral reaction of each ILEC intent on preserving its regional dominance.

A contrary ruling would have subjected every business entity to antitrust liability merely because it has a similar business plan as that of its main competitors, thus imposing an “originality for the sake of originality” mandate on the marketplace.
The case is Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, which is discussed here, here and here.

Hance Haney

Director and Senior Fellow of the Technology & Democracy Project
Hance Haney served as Director and Senior Fellow of the Technology & Democracy Project at the Discovery Institute, in Washington, D.C. Haney spent ten years as an aide to former Senator Bob Packwood (OR), and advised him in his capacity as chairman of the Senate Communications Subcommittee during the deliberations leading to the Telecommunications Act of 1996. He subsequently held various positions with the United States Telecom Association and Qwest Communications. He earned a B.A. in history from Willamette University and a J.D. from Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon.