Margrethe Vestager: Destruction Of Silicon Valley Companies Will Prove Useless
Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice President-Designate of the European Commission, known for her strict attitude to American IT companies, said she sees no reason for destroying them, which is increasingly called for by politicians in the United States. According to Vestager, Silicon Valley can be compared to a hydra, which, after chopping off one head, will grow two more, which will lead to additional problems.
Margrethe Vestager has opposed attacks on Silicon Valley companies, Business Insider reports. She stated this at the Web Summit conference in Lisbon.
Calls to “destroy” global technology corporations, depriving them of absolute power, are increasingly heard in the United States among Democratic politicians. One of the most famous champions of this strategy is presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, who claims that Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple literally destroyed fair competition.
In March 2019, Warren announced that if elected, her administration would transform the technology sector of the US economy, which would include “destruction” of Amazon, Facebook and Google.
However, according to Westager, in order to interact with large IT companies, it is necessary to come up with a new tactic.
The European Commissioner noted that in order for the destruction of companies to appear on the agenda, a serious threat or violation of the law is needed, which is not yet observed.
She added that she does not rule out this situation in the future, but so far she does not support the actions against the Silicon Valley: « Our problems with it are not so great to choose destruction as the only solution. »
Mrs. Vestager noted that regulating large technology companies using the tools that are available to most regulators — fines and supervision — only “partially solves the problem.”
Westager also drew an analogy with the mythical creature, the hydra, with which Hercules fought.
As an alternative, the European Commissioner proposed that the large IT companies, which have reached a certain size and influence in their field of activity, have additional responsibilities.
In addition, she expressed the view that calls for regulation of large technology companies, known for their dishonest practices, for example, illegal data collection, should come from ordinary users.
As part of the Web Summit, Westager was also asked about her opinion regarding the Libra cryptocurrency, which Facebook plans to launch.
“First of all, we are trying to understand what it is all about,” said Westager, adding that Libra is being actively studied not only by its committee, but by the entire European Commission.