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Published: October 24, 2019

Break up Facebook And While We’re At It, Google, Apple, and Amazon

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Originally Published on This Site

For roughly five months, the predominant storyline in Big Tech has been skirmishes with antitrust regulators and their escalating investigations. And for nearly five months, investors haven’t blinked.

Fear of a looming recession could change all that. But for now, expect more of the same when the four companies under scrutiny report their quarterly results over the next two weeks.

Shares of the principal targets — Alphabet Inc.’s GOOGL, +1.32% GOOG, +1.31%  Google, Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, -0.20%  , Apple Inc. AAPL, +1.34%  and Facebook Inc. FB, +2.09%   — have improved since early June, when news leaked of separate Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission probes into their business practices.

Big tech has ushered in a second Gilded Age. We must relearn the lessons of the first, writes the former US labor secretary

 ‘How long will it be before Facebook uses its own data and platform against critics?’ Photograph: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Last week, the New York Times revealed that Facebook executives withheld evidence of Russian activity on their platform far longer than previously disclosed. They also employed a political opposition research firm to discredit critics.

There’s a larger story here.

America’s Gilded Age of the late 19th century began with a raft of innovations – railroads, steel production, oil extraction – but culminated in mammoth trusts owned by “robber barons” who used their wealth and power to drive out competitors and corrupt American politics.

Facebook and Google dominate advertising. They’re the first stops for many Americans seeking news. Apple dominates smartphones and laptop computers. Amazon is now the first stop for a third of all American consumers

The remainder of this article is available in its entirety at HNewsWire


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