More and more companies are treating competitors as friends rather than foes. Recognizing the efficiencies that come from working together, businesses are collaborating on everything from product development to marketing. But until now, they have done so with little meaningful guidance from the courts or the antitrust agencies.

The Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice have tried to remedy this with their new “Antitrust Guidelines for Collaborations Among Competitors.” But while the guidelines’ drafters hoped to provide clarity on the issue, they seem to have achieved the opposite result.