Should FAANG companies be broken apart/regulated?

Title says it all. Are they harmful monopolies or value-generating companies? What would be the best option for our economic growth?

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Comments (51)

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  • Prospect in IB - Ind
Jun 3, 2021 - 2:18am

The only reason Netflix is included in FAANG is because the media won't say FAAG. Change my mind.

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Jun 3, 2021 - 9:17pm

MaxEbic

Alcohol also makes things a lot more exciting. There's a reason why people who don't drink are less successful in the areas of life that matter.

Yes

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Jun 2, 2021 - 6:52pm

At the very least, there should be no moderation of social media whatsoever. I'd support laws that ban the sharing of child porn, but it shouldn't be up to San Francisco liberals to determine what is and isn't an acceptable opinion.

Jun 2, 2021 - 9:41pm

unless you can prove that social media's are public forums (which could even mean the entire internet would be), where you have freedom of speech, they are just private companies attempting to protect themselves, and you can't do anything about that.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Jun 2, 2021 - 10:22pm

Do we really need a burden of proof to force executive or legislative action on people now? Haven't for a long time.

Just pass the law and seize assets in the event of non-compliance.

Also, yes. The internet is a public forum. Any moron with internet connection can use the internet. Is that enough proof? 

Jun 3, 2021 - 11:25pm

Ultimately it's a matter of market share. Considering the amount of market share that Facebook has I would say it is a public forum. Think about all the businesses that have Facebook/IG accounts.

Array

Jun 2, 2021 - 8:16pm

Netflix and Apple? No, I don't think so. 

Facebook, Amazon, and Google? I think there's a strong case to be made. Especially with the rampant and utterly biased censorship FB & Google participated in during last year's election + throughout Covid. Love how all the people bringing up the lab leak were banned and smeared as conspiracy theorists for almost a year until it came out God King Fauci was in fact one of the people sending funding the Wuhan lab in addition to being a HUGE proponent of gain-of-function research. They have way too much sway over public discourse and along with Twitter either need to be heavily regulated like a utility or stripped of Section 230 protections based on their behavior. 

Array

  • 1
  • Prospect in IB - Ind
Jun 3, 2021 - 2:22am

Apple is facing ongoing antitrust litigation surrounding its control of the Apple Store, so I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss it as a potential monopoly.

Jun 3, 2021 - 5:03pm

I understand that argument but I can't help but feel it's somewhat different since Apple by design has developed a closed system for their products. They're not trying to sell it as a "we can do everything and work with everyone" type situation. And I'd still say that the 3 I mentioned as being candidates for anti-monopoly legislation will have a far more negative impact on consumers in the long-term than Apple will (unless you count the borderline slave labor used to make their products, but then this list needs to be bigger). That being said I'm not one to take a hard defensive stance for large corporates so if they're currently in court, fuck 'em I hope the little guy wins. 

Array

Most Helpful
Jun 3, 2021 - 9:22am

facebook and netflix - no, you're free not to use them and it's possible to be a complete part of society without them

google and apple - it should be looked at, because they're the duopoly for smartphone OS, so in effect they are a telecom utility for the entire country and most of the non sino world. WRT google search, you're free to not use it and can still function well in society, so no. I use brave and duckduckgo when I'm not at work, I've been just fine.

amazon - I do not invest in them so I don't know about their practices WRT small business and allegations of stifling competition. on their cloud infrastructure, I'd argue that's also a utility, so things like banning parler from web hosting is a dangerous precedent. should be looked into because just like you can't refuse water service to a Klan member, you shouldn't be able to refuse internet service to disagreeables

that said, I've not given it tremendously deep thought, I just worry about setting precedent on private companies' businesses that are not utilities. telecom software and internet infrastructure is VERY different from search engines. you have a choice in your web browser and search engine, you do not have a choice in smartphone OS (you have two, but still that's it)

Jun 3, 2021 - 8:16pm

thebrofessor

facebook and netflix - no, you're free not to use them and it's possible to be a complete part of society without them

google and apple - it should be looked at, because they're the duopoly for smartphone OS, so in effect they are a telecom utility for the entire country and most of the non sino world. WRT google search, you're free to not use it and can still function well in society, so no. I use brave and duckduckgo when I'm not at work, I've been just fine.

amazon - I do not invest in them so I don't know about their practices WRT small business and allegations of stifling competition. on their cloud infrastructure, I'd argue that's also a utility, so things like banning parler from web hosting is a dangerous precedent. should be looked into because just like you can't refuse water service to a Klan member, you shouldn't be able to refuse internet service to disagreeables

that said, I've not given it tremendously deep thought, I just worry about setting precedent on private companies' businesses that are not utilities. telecom software and internet infrastructure is VERY different from search engines. you have a choice in your web browser and search engine, you do not have a choice in smartphone OS (you have two, but still that's it)

I like your business casual style of writing. Always proper spelling and grammar. First letter of the sentence lowercase to be casual. Uppercase optional. Periods optional. Always classy - lol. 

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • 1
Jun 5, 2021 - 1:33am

First point is so right. Got rid of my facebook / instagram five years ago and yeah some people have found it weird if they can't find me but quality of life is vastly improved.

Jun 3, 2021 - 12:39pm

absolutely they should be.

the information they allow/show on their platform is approved by the Ministry of Truth and protected by their Thought police.

simple test of this theory:
search "cultural marxism" on google
search "cultural marxism" on duckduckgo
compare results

Jun 3, 2021 - 5:54pm

On a personal note, I absolutely hate the large, mainstream social media. I think Mark Benioff coined the phrase that "Facebook is the new cigarettes". It's totally true.

On a realistic "hey lobbying exists" note, I doubt it'll go away. They pump so much money into congress it's ridiculous. I have been very open about my view of most politicians (across the aisle)- they'll take a "donation that's totally not a bribe to vote a specific way" over well-being of their constituents any day.

As much pleasure as I'd derive from the heavy regulation (even in spite of it ruining my career prospects a bit), I think it's something to ease into. We can look at other destructive things and how America has handled it:

- Alcohol, prohibition and then repeal. Now it's totally acceptable to slam a bottle of vodka a night. Don't drive afterward and nobody cares (less close friends/ family/ etc). But from a legal standpoint, you're in the clear. 
 

- Prescriptions, man this is a dark topic. So much abuse and so little, real regulation to curb this huge problem. 
 

- Narcotics, I don't think many people include "War on drugs" and "success" in the same sentence

- Cigarettes, this one is actually not bad. Took a while, but smoking rates are super low right now. I don't know anyone who doesn't think of cancer anytime they see a cigarette. 
 

- Social media... who knows? I'm not that optimistic, but again I could be wrong

“The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.” - Nassim Taleb
Jun 3, 2021 - 11:09pm

Are these correct equivalences? I would have compared the breakup of Standard Oil to the potential breakup of FAANG. I think the monopoly argument has far more weight in action being achieved as opposed to the drug argument. That being said I agree with you that congresspeople on both sides of the aisle are corrupt and would never pass it through. Even the super "outspoken" ones like Warren on the left and Hawley on the right haven't drafted any meaningful legislation.

Array

Jun 3, 2021 - 6:20pm

I would nationalize Twitter and YouTube or at least regulate them as public utilities

"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn

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