It seems that there were two (2) Tech Hearings yesterday. The first was Democrats wondering if Tech Companies are too big and powerful for America’s good.
Axios morning email thingie:
Here’s where the House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee pressed each company hardest:
- Facebook: Panel Democrats said the social network’s acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp were plainly anticompetitive — that the company made the deals to stop Instagram from becoming a competitor to its main platform and WhatsApp from becoming a competitor to its messaging service. CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook had no idea the two would become such juggernauts when it bought them.
- Google: Lawmakers homed in on the company’s acquisition of DoubleClick in 2007 as the watershed moment when its dominance of search combined with power over the levers of online ad targeting.
- Amazon faced tough questions about its role as both a massively successful online retailer and the proprietor of the biggest online marketplace for third-party sellers.
- Apple took sustained heat for its power over the its App Store, and the cut it takes from developers who sell digital products through their apps.
All the companies, subcommittee chair David Cicilline said, have become bottlenecks for distribution, using their chokehold over data to surveil potential competitors and their control over technologies to extend their power.
The favorite dodge? “I’ll get back to you.”
The second “hearing ” was Republicans airing grievances of alleged bias against themselves, against a backdrop of:
Oh, there was some Tech Support –
“My parents, who have a Gmail account, aren’t getting my campaign emails,” Rep. Greg Steube [Ed. – Rep. Greg Steube is Republican from Floriduh. -TG] told Google CEO Sundar Pichai.
So the Tech Bros will live another day.