Various and sundry governments may step in and break up those privacy charlatans, but for now they dominate their respective industries in ways the robber barons of more than a century ago never understood.
Abusive monopoly? Indeed. If you value your privacy and do not want third parties to gather information from you that then is used against you, go dark and eliminate or reduce the axis of evil. But, just for a moment, think about life without Google, Facebook, or Amazon.
Let’s start with Google.
No Google search, no Google Maps, no Gmail, no Sheets or Docs, and, of course, no trackers. Can Google be replaced?
Bing is not as good but exists. DuckDuckGo, too. And many other search engines. Gmail? Meh. Email is a dime a dozen and still free almost everywhere. Maps? Hey, Apple Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, and many others. And the tech world is full of better spreadsheets, word processors, and presentation apps; many free.
Good riddance, Google.
What about Facebook? The social media giant dominates the tech landscape, but there are connectivity options that vie for attention, including Twitter, Instagram (owned by Facebook), Snapchat, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and others.
Jeffrey and I have taken to Apple’s Shared Albums in Photos to share photos so there’s no need for Facebook or Instagram, right?
What about Amazon?
Amazon may be difficult to replace, especially if you’re hooked on Prime, but alternatives are everywhere. In addition to Prime, we use Target, Walmart, Macy’s, Overstock, Jet, and Best Buy. I would be saddened by Amazon’s disappearance, but good alternatives exist, so my tears would dry quickly.
If Google, Facebook, and Amazon folded tomorrow or were banned or dismembered by a new administration then, well, life would go on with little more than a hiccup.