“It is a very harmful scenario”: Massive Tech’s day on the Hill

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos testifies (remotely) before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law hearing on "Online Platforms and Market Power" in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on July 29, 2020.

Enlarge / Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos testifies (remotely) earlier than the Home Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Industrial and Administrative Regulation listening to on “On-line Platforms and Market Energy” within the Rayburn Home Workplace Constructing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on July 29, 2020. (credit score: Graeme Jennings – Pool | AFP | Getty Pictures)

A bevy of tech’s largest titans—Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Apple CEO Tim Cook dinner, and Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg—all took to their distant workplaces Wednesday to dial right into a hotly anticipated Congressional listening to, the most recent a part of an in-depth investigation into their companies’ habits that started greater than a 12 months in the past.

The virtually six-hour listening to was nominally convened to speak about antitrust enforcement, and it had two core questions at its coronary heart. First: do the largest, globe-spanning US tech firms have an excessive amount of energy out there? And second: did they arrive by the facility they do have actually, or did they someway cheat to get it?

Home Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) targeted his opening remarks on how bipartisan the investigation course of has been to this point earlier than sketching out his perception that every one 4 firms current have behaved anticompetitively, turn out to be monopolies, and prompted hurt each to shoppers and the complete democratic undertaking writ massive.

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Zuckerberg wrote “Instagram can harm us” days earlier than acquisition

Masked legislators listen to a man on a computer screen.

Enlarge / Mark Zuckerberg speaks by way of videoconference throughout a Home Judiciary Subcommittee listening to in Washington. (credit score: Graeme Jennings/Washington Examiner/Bloomberg by way of Getty Photographs)

In a 2012 electronic mail six weeks earlier than buying Instagram, Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote that one among his motivations for the acquisition was to “neutralize a possible competitor.” The emails had been revealed throughout right now’s listening to earlier than the Home antitrust committee that includes 4 expertise moguls: Tim Cook dinner, Sundar Pichai, Jeff Bezos, and Zuckerberg. The emails had been first reported by the Verge.

Fb was one of many Web’s largest social networks in 2012, however its dominant place was not as safe then as it’s right now. There have been a number of rival social networks, and Zuckerberg frightened his firm would get caught flat-footed by the shift to smartphones.

Neutralizing a possible competitor?

On the night of February 27, 2012, Zuckerberg emailed Fb Chief Monetary Officer David Ebersman about the potential for buying “cell app corporations like Instagram and Path which can be constructing networks which can be aggressive with our personal.” He frightened that “in the event that they develop to a big scale they could possibly be very disruptive to us.”

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“Zuck off”: Docs, nurses, scientists rail towards Zuckerberg

A frowning man in a business suit.

Enlarge / Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifying earlier than Congress in April 2018. It wasn’t his solely look in DC this decade. (credit score: Bloomberg | Getty Photographs)

San Francisco metropolis officers are contemplating condemning the choice to call a neighborhood public hospital after Mark Zuckerberg—a transfer backed by nurses and docs on the hospital, who’ve been railing towards the Fb co-founder and CEO because the hospital modified its identify in 2015.

San Francisco Supervisor Gordon Mar on Tuesday launched a decision to the board of supervisors that will condemn the Zuckerberg identify. The decision additionally urges town to determine clear guidelines on naming rights that mirror town’s “values and a dedication to affirming and upholding human rights, dignity, and social and racial justice.”

Docs and nurses on the hospital have been campaigning for the hospital to drop the identify because it was first launched in 2015, following a $75 million donation from Zuckerberg and his spouse, Priscilla Chan, a pediatrician who used to work on the hospital. Through the years, hospital workers have expressed concern that the hospital is related to Fb and all of its issues and controversies—together with, however not restricted to, these associated to privateness, unethical analysis, the dissemination of misinformation, hate speech, and disinformation.

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