August 26, 2020

To Counter China Online, Regulate Big Tech

By ​Coby Goldberg

The heads of Amazon, Google, Apple and Facebook fended off tough questions from lawmakers last month at a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee’s antitrust subcommittee. To help allay concerns about monopolistic business practices, each CEO sought to portray his company as representing American values and serving American interests. They all did so in part by pointing to a threat supposedly bigger than their own companies: China.

The U.S. needs to work together with allies to offer an appealing alternative to the Chinese system.

“If you look at where the top technology companies come from, a decade ago the vast majority were American. Today, almost half are Chinese,” Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg said in his opening remarks. “There’s no guarantee our values will win out.” Limiting Facebook’s power, he implied, would only play into Beijing’s hands. Zuckerberg and the other Big Tech executives returned to the specter of Chinese technological dominance more than 30 times over the course of the afternoon, according to a New York Times tally.

Read the full article in World Politics Review.

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