Anyone who cares about keeping our country out of the control of a single god-like dictator should read “An Ugly Truth: Inside Facebook’s Battle for Domination.” The book lays out the sickening tale of Facebook’s rise to dominance in the news distribution business and the frightening effects this is having in our world.
Facebook should be broken up and closely regulated, for four good reasons.
1. Facebook is a monopoly. It has billions of users on Facebook, What’s App, and Instagram, and it has a market capitalization – the value of its stock – of over a trillion dollars. There is growing evidence that Facebook uses its monopoly power to buy out would-be competitors or squash them out of business, thereby securing for itself unusually high profit margins.
2. Facebook invasively tracks every single individual on its app and sells the individual profiles it constructs to advertisers, some of whom have not been ethical in their use of the data.
3. Facebook does not pay its fair share of taxes. It “offshores” its profits to tax havens like Ireland, which have very low corporate tax rates. As a result, it shows little profit in the United States, and therefore pays little in US taxes. Essentially, it is getting a free ride, while the rest of us bear the costs of governing and defending our country.
4. Facebook is unaccountable for the content it distributes. Under Section 230 of US Code governing communications, it cannot be sued for libel, even though lives are damaged and destroyed through the false information it allows on its platform.
Please call or write to Congress today asking them to break Facebook up for the long-term welfare of our communities. Thank you for your time.
Patrick J. Wood