FTC Sues to Block Microsoft’s Acquisition of Gaming Giant Activision Blizzard

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

The FTC has reportedly filed a lawsuit to block Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of video game giant Activision Blizzard.

The Washington Post reports that the FTC filed a lawsuit on Thursday to block Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, citing concerns that the deal would give Microsoft an unfair advantage over its competitors in the gaming industry.

The Associated Press

(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

The FTC claims it is making a significant move to curb consolidation in the tech industry with the new lawsuit. This is the first major action taken by the FTC since Lina Khan (D), a well-known tech critic, became chair of the commission. Khan has indicated a willingness to take tech companies to court rather than settling disputes outside of the legal system.

The lawsuit against Microsoft may impede the company’s plans to expand its presence in the gaming industry. Activision Blizzard, the creator of popular games such as Diablo and Call of Duty, could potentially help Microsoft compete with Japanese console manufacturers Nintendo and Sony.

On Thursday, the commission voted to file a lawsuit in administrative court. The vote was split along party lines, with three Democrats supporting the complaint and one Republican opposing it.

Microsoft faces its most serious regulatory challenge in over two decades. This is the first time Microsoft has faced such a lawsuit since the 1990s, when the company was embroiled in a series of legal battles that lasted for years over its web browser included in Windows.

Microsoft has been making efforts to show regulators that its proposed acquisition of Activision will not harm competition or workers in the gaming market. As the agency approaches a decision on the deal, Microsoft announced on Tuesday that it will bring the popular Call of Duty franchise to the Nintendo Switch, a rival gaming platform to the company’s Xbox. This follows Microsoft’s previous announcement that it would make Call of Duty available on Sony’s Playstation.

Read more at the Washington Post here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan


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