- Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has proposed a plan to break up some of the largest US tech companies, including Amazon, Google, and Facebook.
- The Democratic 2020 presidential candidate’s plan calls for barring tech giants from both providing a marketplace and selling their products on the same marketplace. It also would appoint new regulators that would undo mergers of massive tech companies.
- “That means we break Facebook away from Instagram and WhatsApp, Amazon away from Whole Foods, Google away from Nest, and more,” Warren wrote in a campaign email.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts Democrat who is running for president in 2020, has proposed a plan to break up some of the largest US tech companies, including Amazon, Google, and Facebook, her campaign announced Friday morning.
Warren’s plan includes a call for “platform neutrality” – barring tech giants from both providing a marketplace and selling their product on the same marketplace – and the appointment of new regulators that would undo mergers between massive tech companies. She argues that such mergers smother competition and undermine democracy.
“That means we break Facebook away from Instagram and WhatsApp, Amazon away from Whole Foods, Google away from Nest, and more,” Warren wrote in a campaign email.
The plan also bars companies from sharing users’ data with third parties.
Warren has scheduled a Friday-night rally in Long Island City, Queens, the New York City neighbourhood where Amazon was set to open a new headquarters before it canceled its plans amid fierce local pushback.
“I want a government that makes sure everybody – even the biggest and most powerful companies in America – plays by the rules,” Warren said in a statement to The New York Times. “To do that, we need to stop this generation of big tech companies from throwing around their political power to shape the rules in their favour and throwing around their economic power to snuff out or buy up every potential competitor.”
The proposal would impose new regulations on two tiers of companies: those with annual global revenue of at least $US25 billion and those with revenue between $US90 million and $US25 billion.
Warren is the first 2020 candidate to propose policy to rein in the power of tech giants. Other candidates, including Sens. Bernie Sanders and Amy Klobuchar, have supported tighter regulations.
“Monopolies are a corruption of the marketplace,” Adam Green, a cofounder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, which has endorsed Warren’s presidential bid, said in a statement. “Breaking them up – allowing entrepreneurs to enter the market, giving consumers more choices, and giving workers more jobs – turns the Republican socialism attack on its head.”
And the move is the latest example of Warren’s intense focus on policy. She’s put forward several other sweeping policy proposals as part of her campaign, including a wealth tax on the 75,000 richest families in the US and a nationwide childcare proposal that the tax would help pay for.
- Elizabeth Warren’s plan to break up tech giants would force Amazon to roll back its acquisition of Whole Foods
- Elizabeth Warren’s plan to regulate tech giants would force Facebook to break up with WhatsApp and Instagram
- Facebook and Google will be punished with giant fines in the UK if they fail to rid their platforms of toxic content
- Facebook accused of acting like ‘digital gangsters’ in a devastating report by lawmakers
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