Wednesday, July 03, 2019

The Libertarian/Conservative Argument for Breaking up Big Tech


  1. Thanks, Peter! :)

    Here's my summary of the arguments offered in the video about why big tech companies (e.g. Google, YouTube, Facebook) should be broken up:

    1. Fraudulent business practices. Biased searched results and suppression of videos reflect fraudulent business practices because they're done without public knowledge and without public consent.

    2. Big tech companies are monopolies. If a restaurant charges me 5x what my neighbor is charged because I'm a conservative while my neighbor is a liberal, that's their business, and I can take my business elsewhere. However, if the electric company charges me 5x what my neighbor is charged, I can't go to another electric company, and I can't do without electricity.

    3. Publisher vs. carrier. A publisher can edit content, while a carrier conveys content but cannot edit content. On the one hand, big tech companies claim they are carriers, not publishers. They carry content, but they are not responsible for the content. On the other hand, big tech companies edit content, which would make them publishers, not carriers. So big tech companies are trying to have their cake and eat it too.

  2. I think there are loads of alternatives that can be explored before bringing in the big anti-trust guns. For example:

    This is just a start. Others exist, and are being proposed. Consider what has happened to Microsoft. They were once the all-in-all of the tech world. But advances in web technologies and later mobile technologies have completely misplaced Microsoft’s dominance. Similar things will happen to Google and Facebook.

    The liberal bias within these organizations, too, is not etched in stone. There will be conservative influences within those organizations, “without their consent, and without their awareness”, to quote this guy. Algorithms will continue to change, and they WILL be affected by the presence of competitors who are doing well and taking market share.

    Finally, a key point is that it seems better to me to let the tech world evolve naturally, rather than to give government a hand in setting up what the technology future will be.

    Yes, this guy is right about all of the practices that are outlined here (in Hawk’s comment) above. But all of that will work itself out without putting government authority into play — a thing we may find to be more uncomfortable in the future than what these companies are doing now.

    1. The reason I disagree with you is because Silicon Valley tech companies are ALREADY working together. Look what happened to Gab. They are banned from using and/or being on the Apple store, Shopify, Paypal, Mastercard, Patreon, Google Play, Microsoft Azure, Stripe, Coinbase, Square, Go Daddy. Another competitor to Twitter, Parler, is being threatened from removal from Apple's store too. When Patreon banned a bunch of people earlier this year, they switched to SubscribeStar and SubscribeStar was immediately banned from Paypal.

      It's one thing to say "Build an alternative company." But to insist that you have to build an alternative platform, an alternative payment processor, alternative financial institution, alternative ISP, and alternative DNS registers JUST TO NOT BE CENSORED BY LEFTISTS is unfeasible.

      These companies MUST be broken up. It's a moral imperative. Right now they have more power than the government and are not answerable to the limitations we put on the government via the Constitution. At the bare minimum, your rights under the Constitution should not be superseded by monopolies and oligarchies.

    2. Likewise, while I in general distrust government, at this point it is impossible for the government to do a worse job than Silicon Valley is already doing. At least the government is represented by 50% conservative voices, as opposed to the 98% far left and 2% center left voices in the Bay Area.