How Are The Big Tech Companies Going Political?By Toby Tunwase
Science and technology are the world’s most effective tools for change. Over the past decade, the influence of technology companies has almost tripled. In 2010, only 2 of the top 20 wealthiest people owned tech companies. Today, 6 of the top 10 wealthiest people specialize in communication technology and big data.
Specifically, communications companies are leading the Big Tech industry. Popularly referred to as the FAAMG (signifying Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Google), these companies have changed the face of information delivery, interpersonal and group communication. However, there might be a case of these companies overstepping their bounds.
Generally, there are claims that these big tech companies are starting to go political. Here are some of the ways they are guilty of this accusation.
- Censoring politicians: Social media companies like Twitter and Facebook have recently been flagging and limiting politicians’ posts. Remarkably, many social media platforms have blocked political office holders from using their communication media. Most famous in recent times was former US President Donald Trump.
- Showing support for particular political candidates: Big Tech companies should be neutral in political matters. However, most of them have openly displayed support for some politicians by praising their actions and ideologies.
- Ban on political activities: Big Tech companies infamously placed a ban on political ads on their platforms. While this action seemed like a neutral move, its implementation showed that it was intended at cutting off election candidates from raising political issues.
In other scenarios, big techs have been known to sponsor politically-inclined movements and individuals. Sadly, this trend may pose a potential threat to democracy and the trust in Big Tech if it continues unabated.