“In addition, the Sidecar App provided an easy means of ensuring price-competition by private drivers, to the benefit of customers. It allowed those private drivers to set their own proposed fare rates, competing with one another”
The antitrust law’s firm exemption strictly applies to entities that a platform have a direct control over, such as employees. Uber does not hire drivers, hence it can’t exercise de facto control over pricing over any independent contractors.
Uber has a financial incentive to lower the prices because the total aggregate rake revenue is higher for 100 price-fixed transactions than, say, 10 market-rate transactions. Since it has no direct costs to think about, unlike the entity that actually delivers the service, its sole interest is with the higher aggregate take rake.
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