Chris Hughes co-founded Facebook with Mark Zukerberg, and clarifies Zuckerberg in warm terms as a friend, but at a long op-ed for the New York Times,” Hughes involves the breakup of Facebook and defines Zuckerberg’s shortsighted prioritization of”clicks” instead of”security and civility” for your stage’s toxicity, blaming the company’s unusual share structure (which gives Zuckerberg an absolute veto over all matters of company policy despite holding a minority of its shares) for a scenario in which Zuckerberg is surrounded by yes-men who never check his worst impulses.
Hughes argues that Facebook should not have been permitted to acquire Instagram or Whatsapp, also requires a return to traditional, pre-Reagan antitrust laws, fueled by the American Founding Fathers’ commitment to pluralism and their skepticism of concentrated power.
Hughes calls enumerates ways in which Facebook monopolizes key sectors of the economy and Facebook a monopoly. He implies that Facebook’s dominance isn’t a reflection of its quality, but rather the FTC prosecution, which allowed Facebook to get away to gain and expand its position.
He also pooh-poohs the possibility that Facebook could team up a privacy team to remake its own culture, and rather lays out an ambitious record of Facebook reforms: breaking up the organization and forcing it to sell off important units it obtained like Whatsapp and Instagram; banning new acquisitions, and creating a new national agency to oversee Facebook and its competitors.
Some people today doubt an attempt to break up Facebook would acquire in the courts, given the emptiness about the federal bench to antitrust action, or that this divided Congress could ever be able to muster sufficient consensus to make a regulatory agency for social media.
We can expect the same out of even an unsuccessful suit against Facebook.
Similarly, the Justice Department’s 1970s lawsuit accusing of illegally maintaining its monopoly on computer sales IBM ended in a stalemate. However, along the way, IBM changed many of its behaviours. It ceased bundling its hardware and software, made a very open layout for the operating system in its computers and didn’t exercise control. Professor Wu has written that this”policeman at the elbow” directed IBM to steer clear”of anything close to anticompetitive conduct, for fear of adding to the situation against it”
But even if breakup and regulation are successful, oversight will be brought by simply pushing to them. The government’s case against Microsoft — which it illegally used its market power in operating methods to force its customers to use its web browser, Internet Explorer — ended in 2001 when George W. Bush’s administration abandoned its effort to split up the company. Yet that prosecution helped rein to control the web.
(Thank You No Name! )