FEATURED REPORT

Reining In Big Tech

- May 7, 2021
Should the four giants be dismantled?
Photo of 100 cardboard cutouts of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg placed outside of the U.S. Capitol on April 10, 2018. (AFP/Getty Images/Saul Loeb)
Four technology companies — Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple — known as Big Tech have transformed how people around the world shop, communicate and gather information. These economic powerhouses have a combined market value of more than $6 trillion, larger than the gross national product of any country except the United States and China. Their CEOs point out that the companies have brought millions of low-cost products and services to billions of customers, but critics say they are powerful monopolies that treat competitors unfairly and stifle innovation.

As a consumer, have you personally benefited — or been hurt — by the dominance of Big Tech? If so, how?

What would the long-term impacts be — for consumers and for entrepreneurs — of breaking up the Big Tech companies? Would such a breakup improve your life, as a consumer?

 
1890–1960sGovernment moves to break up large companies.
1969–1989Personal computers and the invention of the internet spur an information revolution, and critics begin to question U.S. antitrust policy.
1990–2000Dramatic growth in the online population transforms how the world gets information and communicates.
2002–2012The companies that will become global social networking giants emerge.
2015–PresentSocial media networks become global powerhouses as problems with viral misinformation and extremist political rhetoric grow online.
   

Should the U.S. government break up the four tech giants?

Pro

Daniel A. Hanley
Policy Analyst, Open Markets Institute.

Con

Allison Schrager
Senior Fellow, Manhattan Institute.

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