Tech oligopoly exists. You have aptly identified the trouble and have served them fitting charges. Indeed, Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook have flourished to the clouds from their humble beginnings. And they have flexed their monopoly powers too often to dictate prices and rules for commerce, search, advertising, social networking, and publishing. They have gone overboard many times, turning into ‘glaring’ over the years.
What you’re missing here is the fact they have raised the bar of convenience to an almost unattainable mark. For example, Amazon is a seller and functions as a marketplace for other merchants. Apple provides the most user-friendly interface suitable even for elementary school kids and the elderly. Facebook and Twitter are driving the cryptocurrency graphs.
And this is not to shield their abuse of power behind merit. The scenario that has mounted up to its current stature may be curbed not by regulations but by decentralization.
Benefits from Decentralization
This is also not saying, blockchain is the cure-all for society’s ills. No one tool or technology ever can be. However, their adoption and implementation on a broad societal scale could potentially resist some of its concerns regarding the oligopolistic movements of Silicon Valley tech-evangelism.
Initially, the financial monopolization by Silicon Valley of all the data and value contained in the Web 2.0 landscape may be redistributed with the control passing towards individual users in Web 3.0. Next, blockchain-enabled social decentralization can potentially reorganize and re-democratize patterns of human participation and cooperation. Third, blockchains are not centrally controlled by an authority, but by the entire network of participants, who establish the rules for participation through a smart contract riding the blockchains. They may themselves elect to evolve the system according to consensus; this makes them censorship-resistant and inherently more elastic than most other decision-making mechanisms for large groups of people.
What’s more important, blockchain-fuelled technologies may effectively allow for decentralized coordination and alignment of human incentives on a scale that is possible only by top-down, command-and-control structures. Decentralization is thus dispersing command, control, and power away from a central location or authority. In a decentralized architecture, it is difficult if not impossible to observe a particular center.
It is noteworthy here that the world wide web was originally designed in a decentralized fashion, offering equal opportunity to all users. The cryptocurrency was developed to work in a decentralized way to facilitate equitable distribution of wealth and as a wedge against inflation.
Even after the effort that went into decentralization of the subjects, it was only a ‘re-centralization’ of wealth, control, and power. A handful of prominent investors, industry leaders, and businessmen directed the graph of the economy. Bought or thwarted the rivals.
Thus re-entered the decade of oligopoly matching those of the oil barons and railway tycoons of the previous century.
We propose enforcement of decentralized architecture ensures equal opportunity and the rise of competing brands to protect the interest of the consumers.