TECHNOLOGY GIANTS NOW VIEWED AS THREATS
Facebook, Google, Amazon, Twitter and the like have proven to be a more useful tool for stoking anger, writes
backlash that is still gathering force.
“For 10 years, the arguments in tech were about which chief executive was more like Jesus. Which one was going to run for president. Who did the best job convincing the workforce to lean in,” said Scott Galloway, a professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business.
“Now sentiments are shifting. The worm has turned.”
News is dripping out of Facebook, Twitter and now Google about how their ad and publishing systems were harnessed by the Russians.
On Nov 1, the Senate Intelligence Committee will hold a hearing on the matter.
It is unlikely to enhance the companies’ reputations.
Under growing pressure, the companies are mounting a public relations blitz.
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, was in Washington this week, meeting with lawmakers and making public mea culpas about how things happened during the election “that should not have happened”.
Sundar Pichai, Google’s chief executive, was in Pittsburgh on Thursday talking about the “large gaps in opportunity across the US” and announcing a US$1 billion (RM4.2 billion) grant programme to promote jobs.
Underlying the meet-andgreets is the reality that the Internet
Facebook, Google and others positioned themselves as bettering the world. But their systems and tools have also been used to undermine democracy.