So, I work for a small business. We leverage technology and infrastructure from both Google and Amazon, which allows us to do things that we couldn’t otherwise do on our own. That’s an example.
Yes, historically, benefit to the consume does in fact matter when considering this kind of thing.
Microsoft’s anti-competitive practices weren’t beneficial to consumers. They actually worked to prevent effective competition.
Google’s 90% share of search doesn’t prevent you from accessing someone else’s search engine… the problem is that no one else has actually MADE a search engine that’s better than Google. If someone else was actually able to do search better, and somehow Google crushed them, then I’d be more worried, but I don’t think that’s been the case thus far.
Likewise, Amazon has totally transformed the retail market, but they’re still only a small portion of retail. Of course, they’re growing much more than any other retailer, but how much of this is simply due to old school retailers failing to adapt to the new market? Should I be forced to go to the mall to buy electronics, just to prop up some failing brick and mortar retailer? What exactly is the value in that old retail model?
I did (although in fairness, I had it going in the background while doing other work). It’s actually not a bad piece at all, although I don’t necessarily agree with his conclusions.
I think that it’s absolutely worth applying scrutiny to the tech giants. I’m just not sold on the idea that we should be breaking them up. They aren’t monopolies in any real sense of the word. Hell, in many cases, they are directly competing with each other. But we’re seeing a major technological shift in our economy, and that’s causing major disruptions. But these companies are providing major value to consumers… a lot of that disruption is simply things getting better.