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Big Tech critic Tim Wu is leaving the White House

Wu joined the National Economic Council in 2021.
New York State democratic governor candidate Zephyr Teachout (L) speaks next to lieutenant governor candidate running mate Tim Wu (2nd L) during a campaign event in New York September 3, 2014. Teachout and lieutenant governor candidate running mate Tim Wu are challenging current New York governor Andrew Cuomo and his lieutenant governor candidate Kathleen Hochul in the Democratic primary on September 9.  REUTERS/Brendan McDermid (UNITED STATES - Tags: BUSINESS)
Brendan McDermid / reuters
Igor Bonifacic
Igor Bonifacic|@igorbonifacic|December 31, 2022 2:10 PM

After advising President Biden on technology and competition policy for nearly two years, net neutrality advocate Tim Wu is leaving the White House. The Biden administration announced the departure this week, noting Wu’s final day at the National Economic Council would fall on January 4th. Wu became a special advisor to the president in March 2021. He held a similar position during the Obama administration.

Wu told The New York Times he’s leaving the federal government to spend more time with his family. His post at the White House had required Wu to commute between New York and Washington DC, leaving his young children without their father for stretches of time. “There’s a time where the burden on family is too much,” he said. “I’ve been feeling the balance has shifted.” Wu told The Times he plans to return to Columbia University, where he was a law professor before his latest government stint.

Wu is leaving the White House at a critical moment during the Biden administration's efforts to rein in Big Tech. Last year, he co-authored the executive order that instructed the Federal Communications Commission to restore net neutrality and promised greater scrutiny of mergers. In July of this year, the Federal Trade Commission sued Meta to block the purchase of VR developer Within. Earlier this month, the agency also moved to prevent Microsoft’s merger with Activision Blizzard. Both cases are currently before the courts and are expected to be tough battles for the FTC. 

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Big Tech critic Tim Wu is leaving the White House