Sen. Warren: We Need to Break Up Amazon, Facebook, Google

From PC Mag: Sen. Elizabeth Warren today proposed breaking up big tech companies, which she says have "too much power over our economy, our society, and our democracy."

In a Friday blog post, Sen. Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, called out Facebook, Amazon, and Google in particular, but her plan covers any large tech company engaging in what she considers to be anti-competitive behavior.

"We need to stop this generation of big tech companies from throwing around their political power to shape the rules in their favor and throwing around their economic power to snuff out or buy up every potential competitor," Warren wrote.

The senator, who is currently seeking the Democratic nomination for president in 2020, pledged to "make big, structural changes to the tech sector to promote more competition" in a Warren administration.

Specifically, she wants to label companies "with an annual global revenue of $25 billion or more and that offer to the public an online marketplace, an exchange, or a platform for connecting third 'platform utilities.'"

Warren called for legislation that would ban these utilities from owning "both the platform utility and any participants on that platform" and could not transfer or share data with third parties. Firms that violate these rules would pay a fine of 5 percent of annual revenue

Warren pointed to Amazon Marketplace, Google's ad exchange, and Google Search as examples of platform utilities. "Therefore, Amazon Marketplace and Basics, and Google's ad exchange and businesses on the exchange would be split apart. Google Search would have to be spun off as well," she wrote.

Meanwhile, Warren wants to reverse "illegal and anti-competitive tech mergers" via appointed regulators. That includes Amazon's acquisitions of Whole Foods and Zappos, Facebook's purchase of WhatsApp and Instagram, and Google's deals with Waze, Nest, and DoubleClick.

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