Ahead of Senate Hearing, Journalism is at the Center of the Big Tech Antitrust Conversationby Greater Diversity News September 18, 2019
WASHINGTON, DC – Ahead of today’s Senate Judiciary hearing on the Oversight of the Enforcement of the Antitrust Laws – aimed at the lack of effective regulation on big tech – John Stanton, former DC bureau chief for BuzzFeed and co-founder of the Save Journalism Project, who is attending today’s hearing, is available to continue the conversation about oversight and big tech’s ever-increasing power and influence over the news industry. The Save Journalism Project will also be live tweeting the hearing here.
The DOJ and FTC recently launched major antitrust investigations into Facebook, Google and Apple. At today’s hearing, Federal Trade Commission Chairman Joseph Simmons and Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim will testify about those investigations. The tech giants’ monopolistic power and their domination of the digital advertising marketplace has destroyed the economic sustainability of the journalism industry. With news outlets around the country closing down, journalism in America is hanging on by a thread.
John Stanton, former DC bureau chief for BuzzFeed – who was laid off in January – and co-founder of the Save Journalism Project, regarding today’s hearing:
In a recent Pew Research report, 71% of Americans today believe their local news media are doing well financially. Americans are clearly misinformed – the reality for newsrooms nationwide is a constant struggle for revenue in a marketplace dominated by big tech. As the fourth estate, crucial to democracy, journalism is intended to inform the public. If journalism ceases to exist, who will protect the citizens? We cannot let this be journalism’s future.
Today’s hearing will hopefully further shed light on the monopolistic control that these big tech behemoths have gained at reporters’ expense. As a journalist, who was most deeply affected by tech’s absolute control, I am optimistic that today’s conversation will continue to place journalism and all affected reporters, including myself, at the epicenter of the conversation.
We are at a crucial time to ensure that big tech’s power is checked and the institutions whose job it is to provide oversight are monitored as well. Without the continued support from lawmakers, the FTC and the DOJ, the discussion and the scrutiny of these tech behemoths will continue to go overlooked. I am heartened to see this timely topic continued. But this hearing cannot be the end of the conversation, journalism deserves more than that.
Journalism in America is facing an existential threat from the monopolistic control of tech giants like Google, Facebook, and Apple. Big tech’s dominance over the digital advertising market and their unrivaled capacity to monetize its platforms are having drastic effects on journalism as a whole.