(Bloomberg) -- The Biden administration’s antitrust enforcers are hosting a major event on competition in artificial intelligence Thursday, but some of the biggest names in the industry aren’t invited to speak.

Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Amazon.com Inc., Meta Platforms Inc. and Microsoft Corp. — who have raced to partner with leading AI startups like Anthropic  and OpenAI Inc. through funding and cloud computing deals — are absent from the workshop. The same goes for Nvidia Corp., whose centrality to the global AI supply chain in the form of cutting-edge chips has sent its stock soaring.

Instead, the workshop, co-hosted by Stanford University, will bring together top venture capital firms along with enforcers from the US, UK and European Union and smaller players in the space like France’s Mistral AI, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and Broadcom Inc. 

The speaker list was intentional, Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust Jonathan Kanter said in an interview ahead of the workshop, though he declined to comment on the exclusion of the Big Tech firms.

Nvidia, Google, Microsoft, Anthropic and Open AI had no comment on the speakers. Amazon didn’t have an immediate response. Meta didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

The workshop aims to host “a thoughtful conversation on AI. That includes enforcement authorities domestically and abroad,” Kanter said, along with representatives of the content community from music to journalism.

‘Compensate Creators’

At the conference opening Thursday, Kanter said AI companies need to “adequately compensate creators for their works” lest other industries crumble in the same way that journalism has since the creation of the Internet.

“Everyone concerned about human progress should be concerned about what incentive will tomorrow’s creators, journalists, writers and artists have if AI has the ability to extract their ingenuity without appropriate compensation,” Kanter said.

In her remarks, European Commission Vice President Vera Jourova pushed back on the idea that government AI policies will harm innovation. The EU recently finalized a landmark set of rules on AI, expected to go into effect in June, that could set the tone for how the technology is governed in the Western world. Unlike the Internet and social media era, when startups in garages led the way, the AI revolution is being led by the largest tech companies, she said.

“We need meaningful rules,” Jourova said. “It is hard to imagine a teenager challenging Microsoft and OpenAI. You can see barriers to entry everywhere.”

Antitrust enforcers across the world have become concerned that many of the most promising AI startups depend heavily on the dominant tech companies for their financing and infrastructure needs. In the US, the Justice Department enforces antitrust laws along with its sister agency, the Federal Trade Commission, which is also responsible for consumer protection enforcement. 

Read more: US Justice Department Steps Up Focus on Competition in AI

The FTC is already probing OpenAI amid concerns the company’s popular chatbot engaged in unfair or deceptive practices that caused “reputational harm” to consumers. The agency is also undertaking a study of the investments and partnerships struck by Google, Amazon and Microsoft with artificial intelligence startups Anthropic and OpenAI. Meanwhile the Justice Department has been scrutinizing whether AI companies are violating US antitrust law by using the same executives or directors.

The speakers list contrasts sharply with congressional hearings and meetings last year that featured the chief executives of Google, Microsoft, OpenAI, Meta and Tesla Inc. in discussions about how the US should regulate the industry.

Several international agencies are also expected to attend, including from the UK, which issued a report in March raising concerns about major US tech companies whose investments in AI may allow them “to shape these markets in their own interests.” 

Read more: FTC Wants to Penalize Companies for Use of AI in Impersonation

“The best enforcement is enforcement done in real time,” said Kanter, who has made enforcement against the tech giant’s a hallmark of his tenure at the Justice Department. “AI is a transformational technology that has the potential to fundamentally alter how markets work. We need to make sure we have a responsive and effective program to protect competition in AI and technologies that enable it.”

--With assistance from Davey Alba and Rachel Metz.

(Updates with opening remarks from Kanter starting in seventh paragraph)

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