An unprecedented recalibration of the rules regulating the functioning of competition in the digital markets has catalysed diverse reactions among the main stakeholders. The proposed approach to regulating gatekeepers will have a paradigmatic impact on European consumers, businesses and public institutions. It will have equally significant implications for the theoretical foundations of competition law, economics and policy. While formally the Digital Markets Act (DMA) is complementing, not substituting, existing provisions of competition de lege lata, such a substantial extension of the rationale and instruments of competition policy is likely to have significant implications also for the application of ex-post rules. The entire apparatus of competition law will be extended by the new modality. Out of the wide spectrum of changes introduced by the DMA/DSA proposal, this article identifies and analyses one of the central – though not so commonly discussed – elements of the transformation. It asks a normative question about what kind of competition in the digital markets the European Union should seek to establish, and a methodological question about procedural and substantive legal mechanisms used for shaping such a new format.