Of the federal government Promotion of reform of Internet platforms has increased dramatically this week. The Surgeon General referred to the disorder as a public health risk. The White House press secretary called for the deletion of 12 accounts on Facebook that could be responsible for 65 percent of Kovid’s isolation on the site. “They’re killing people,” President Joe Biden said of Facebook. He then hired Jonathan Canter, the architect of the EU no-confidence motion against Google, to run the antitrust division of the judiciary. The table can finally be set for the necessary repairs.
Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter have become the main communication platforms in our society, but collectively they are undermining public health, democracy, privacy and competition with detrimental consequences. Most Americans understand this but they don’t want to be bothered to lose what they like about internet platforms. And they have successfully watered down the struggle platforms by fighting to understand the extent of the problem and have used their vast resources to collaborate with academia, think tanks and NGOs as well as many politicians.
It’s easy to see why platforms fight so hard to prevent correction. Covid’s chaos, the incarnation of democracy, the invasion of privacy, and hostile behavior are not flawed. These are business models of Internet platforms that work exactly as designed. The problem is that platforms like Google and Facebook are too big to be safe.
On their current scale, with nearly twice as many active users in China, platforms like Google and Facebook pose a systemic threat that coincides with climate change or epidemics. Setting these up can be a challenge in the best of circumstances. But today, the courts are lagging behind in economic power and Congress is crippled, leaving the administration as our best hope. Forty years of deregulation and declining funding have left our regulatory structure with few tools and little muscle tone. Fortunately, the former FTC advisor to the National Economic Council, Tim U, has been appointed as the chairman of the FTC. And Canter is a brilliant move because these leaders understand the issues and will make the most of the tools limited to their control. The payoff for getting this right will be huge.
The first challenge facing the president and his party is to frame the issue correctly. To this day, the tendency of policy makers is to view the disadvantages of Internet platforms not as systemic, but as a series of coincidences. With limited equipment and time, the administration must look for high-lift opportunities.
Internet platforms depend on the attention of media companies, consumers, but they have huge advantages. traditional traditional media. They have unprecedented scale and impact. They are surveillance engines that collect data about users. They complement it by acquiring location data from the cellphone; Health information from prescriptions, treatment tests and applications; History and preferences for web browsing. With all of this, the platforms create data voodoo puppets that enable them to predict user behavior that can be sold to advertisers and power manipulative recommendation engines. Platforms can use this power to make users happier, healthier or more successful but instead they use data to exploit each user’s emotional triggers because it is easier to do and generates more revenue and profits.
The last five years have proved that internet platforms cannot be persuaded to reform them. They do not believe that they are responsible for damages caused by their products. They believe that these losses are a reasonable expense of their success because Facebook did nothing meaningful after learning that Brexit was used to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. Why did the organization become vocal after the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya in Myanmar and the terrorist attack that showed vivid dreams in Christchurch. Why it has ignored warnings to users in Quinn about radicalizing and using it to organize and execute rebellion. And why Mark Zuckerberg and his team pretend not to be responsible for spreading the chaos of Kovid. Since 2016, politicians, civil society groups and leaders like me have been trying to persuade Facebook to change its business practices for the benefit of the public and executives. Consistently selected companies across the country.