The Worlds Big Tech Media bosses have appeared before a Washington lawmakers to defend their firms against claims they abuse their power to quash competitors.
Amazon's Jeff Bezos, Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, Sundar Pichai of Google, and Tim Cook of Apple all insisted they had done nothing illegal and stressed the American roots and values of their firms. The appearance comes as lawmakers consider tougher competition regulation.
Democrats pressed the tech titans on competition issues, while Republicans were more concerned about how they managed information and whether they were marginalising conservative views. Amazon´s Bezos told the hearing that the world "needs large" firms, while the other supremo´s argued that their companies had spurred innovation.
Congressman David Cicilline, the Democrat leading the congressional committee holding the hearing, said a year-long investigation by lawmakers had showed the online platforms had "wielded their power in destructive, harmful ways in order to expand". He said he was convinced the firms were monopolies and called for action. "Some need to be broken up and all need to be properly regulated," he said at the end of more than five hours of testimony.
At the hearing, lawmakers accused Google of having stolen content created by smaller firms, like Yelp, in order to keep users on their own web pages with Amazon's treatment of sellers on its site, Facebook's acquisition of competitors such as Instagram, and Apple's App store were also on the agenda. To read the full Analysis of the hearing please Click Here to Login or Click Here to Register Free