Antitrust regulators are looking forcing Google to sell its chrome browser as well as parts of its advertising network.
This is a good start.
What also should be applied is the remove the special stock that gives the founders outsize voting rights.
Many of the anti-competitive behaviors flow from the belief of their founders that they are supermen beyond the limitations of mortal men, and so they need not concern themselves with the rules.
See Neumann at WeWork, Zuckerberg at Facebook, and Musk at ……… well ……… everything, as well as Page and Brin at Google.
What’s more, the recompense for the loss of these voting rights would be small, so you can do it on the cheap.
Also, prohibit any corporate acquisitions by these companies.
As was the case with Facebook and Instagram, this was a purchase happened because Facebook was relentlessly tracking its users, and came to see it as a threat:
Regulators are considering a breakup of the Google empire, including a forced sale of its dominant web browser Google Chrome and certain aspects of its ad-tech stack.
A Politico report cites several sources with knowledge of the discussions taking place as the U.S. Department of Justice and several state attorneys general prepare to file suit against the online behemoth.
Official proceedings are expected to take place within weeks, following months of speculation over how government officials intend to rein in Google’s dominance of the $130 billion a year online advertising business—of which Google controls 37.2%.
Google Chrome commands a 66.3% share of the global web browser market, according to GlobalStats. Its ad stack, popularly referred to as DoubleClick, comprises both buy- and sell-side tools as well as its dominant ad-serving tool.
This set of tools, as well as Google’s “closed” operating model, has prompted many to accuse Google of exerting undue control over all aspects of the online advertising market (see video below), and its 2015 decision to block third-party ad-buying tools from purchasing ad space on YouTube was widely criticized.
The latest media reports come within a week of the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Antitrust publishing a 449-page report roundly criticizing Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google.
Among the recommendations in the report were that authorities impose “structural separations,” either by way of a forced sale of certain parts of each company’s assets or assurances parts of their businesses are firewalled. Other recommendations included rules to prevent “self-preferencing,” plus the promotion of “interoperability” with third parties and an overhaul of M&A laws.
Speaking at Adweek’s virtual NexTech conference on the same day the CEOs of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google were appearing before the congressional subcommittee behind last week’s report, NYU professor Scott Galloway said, “They need to be broken up.”
They should be forced to sell YouTube as well. And it should be sold to the public, somehow – not exactly nationalized (that would turn it into a political football), but turned into a public trust.
And absolutely the same for Facebook, which should also be required to adopt an open platform approach.
Then we could require that the First Amendment apply to Facebook, Google, all of them.