“Since it has the power to censor the internet, Google should be regulated like the public utility it is to make sure it doesn’t further distort the free flow of information. To the rest of us, that needs to happen immediately. Too bad it’s come to this. A lot of us trusted Google not to be evil. Silly us.” -Tucker Carlson
Doug Mainwaring : Aug 24, 2017 : LifeSiteNews.com
(Silicon Valley)— [LifeSiteNews.com] A few large businesses control the vast majority of the flow of online commerce. Among those are Google, YouTube (owned by Google), Facebook, and PayPal, each dominating a different facet of the internet. (Photo: Creative Commons/via Pixabay)
Perhaps more significantly, together they hold a near-monopoly on the flow of information and news, and as such are able to manipulate public discourse and limit free, unimpeded inquiry.
Because of this, questions are being raised by public figures who suspect that the time is ripe for these tech giants to be regulated as public utilities in order to provide greater safeguards against heavy-handed favoring of progressive values and messaging over balanced or conservative ones.
The Silicon Valley tech giants’ very liberal corporate cultures have recently shown themselves to be illiberal. Far from welcoming free discussion in-house among their employees, those with differing or dissenting political and/or cultural views have been swiftly cast out.
Need for regulation to protect freedom
Former White House adviser Steve Bannon, now returned to Breitbart News, says Facebook and Google “have become essential elements of 21st century life,” that “should be regulated as utilities,” according to The Intercept. The report continues, “Bannon’s basic argument, as he has outlined it to people who’ve spoken with him, is that Facebook and Google have become effectively a necessity in contemporary life. Indeed, there may be something about an online social network or a search engine that lends itself to becoming a natural monopoly, much like a cable company, a water and sewer system, or a railroad.”
David Chavern, the president and CEO of the News Media Alliance, said in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece, “[A] threat to America’s news industry looms mostly unnoticed: Google and Facebook’s duopolistic dominance of online advertising, which could do far more damage to the free press than anything the president posts on Twitter.”
Jonathan Taplin, author of Move Fast and Break Things: How Facebook, Google and Amazon Cornered Culture and Undermined Democracy, warns that the tech giants “now determine the future of the music, film, television, publishing and news industries.”
“If you think this is a problem only for musicians, or journalists, you are wrong,” Taplin said. “With the reallocation of money to monopoly platforms comes a shift in power. Google, Facebook and Amazon now enjoy political power on par with Big Oil and Big Pharma, which makes finding solutions to this problem even more difficult.”
Google ‘controls reality’
Fox News host and pundit Tucker Carlson recently made the case for regulating tech giants like Google. Carlson said, “Google is the most powerful company in the history of the world. It’s the portal through which the bulk of our information flows. That means that if Google isn’t on the level, neither is our understanding of the world. To an unprecedented extend, Google controls reality. Google has already shown a disturbing willingness to distort reality for ideological ends.”
Carlson continued, “Until they were sued for it in 2008, Google refused to allow anti-abortion advertisements on its platforms even though they freely allowed pro-abortion ones. On the flip side, Google often blacklist certain sites from hosting ads which denies them revenue. Recently, Google-owned YouTube has introduced procedures to cut off revenue to, quote, ‘offensive content.’ What’s offensive? Who decides?…”
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