On Friday morning, Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) promised that, if elected president in 2020, she would separate technology giants such as Amazon, Facebook and Google. Just a few hours later, he arrived in the city of Long Island in New York City to present his proposal to a community that recently felt threatened by one of those companies.
"Hello, Long Island City," Warren shouted at the crowd. "I understand that you had a visitor."
"Amazon came in. Amazon left," he continued. "That's the problem in America today. We have these giant technology companies that think they rule the earth. "
Over 1,000 people withstood the cold to listen to Warren's proposal, came out on Amazon, and the crowd shouted and applauded when he called the company for acting anticompetitively.
the technological space, "one person in the crowd told me.
In his proposal, Warren says that, if elected, he would appoint regulators who will work to spin off previous acquisitions of companies like Facebook and Google to their own companies. again. In the case of Facebook, that would mean forcing the company to sell Instagram and WhatsApp. In addition, he proposed legislation that would prohibit platforms from generating more than $ 25 billion in annual revenue for acting as "participants" on their platform.
For many, the legislation seemed to be a direct attack on Amazon. If Warren's proposal is approved, Amazon would not be allowed to sell its own products on its website, only third-party products.
The City of Long Island (LIC), located in the borough of Queens, New York, was a symbolic symbol of the venue's choice for the Warren campaign event on Friday night. Last year, Amazon courted dozens of cities across the country for the location of its second location in search of the best set of incentives for local officials. In November, Amazon announced that it would split its new headquarters into two, divided between LIC and Northern Virginia. Virginia welcomed the company with little criticism, but shortly after the announcement, local New York City politicians and supporters united against the decision. A few months later, Amazon retreated.
Warren was introduced by two members of the New York legislature who pushed the toughest against Amazon, sensationrs Mike Gianaris and Jimmy Van Bramer. Both were at the forefront of promotional efforts to renegotiate the agreement or oust Amazon completely, and they supported Warren while criticizing the company's behavior.
"[Big tech companies] think they can come to cities and states and urge everyone to do whatever they want," Warren said. "They think they can collect all our personal data and sell it to whoever they want and for whatever purpose. They think that they can manage their businesses and simply transfer all the small companies, all the entrepreneurs and all the newly created companies that could threaten their position. And what does our government do in Washington? Nothing. "
Over the past year, discussions about the state of the antitrust law in the United States have taken on new relevance, legislators on both sides of the aisle are now beginning to rethink how regulators can combat anti-competitive behavior, Especially when it comes to technology companies, criticism of companies has become common in Congress, but no politician has been so explicit about the importance of separating giant technology corporations like Warren.
"I want a government I'm not here to work for giant technology companies, "Warren said." I want a government that is here to work for the people. "