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Tech Giants May Have to be Broken Up, says Tim Berners-Lee

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Berners-Lee said he was disappointed in the current state of the Internet.

World Wide Web inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee said that technology giants like Facebook and Google have too much clout and may need to be broken up.

Credit: Simon Dawson/Reuters

Tech giants such as Facebook and Google have grown so dominant they may need to be broken up, unless challengers or changes in taste reduce their clout, Tim Berners-Lee has said.

Berners-Lee, the computer scientist who invented the World Wide Web in 1989, said he was disappointed with the current state of the Internet, following scandals over the abuse of personal data and the use of social media to spread hate.

The digital revolution has spawned a handful of U.S.-based technology companies since the 1990s that now have a combined financial and cultural power greater than most sovereign states.

Berners-Lee told Reuters, "What naturally happens is you end up with one company dominating the field so through history there is no alternative to really coming in and breaking things up. There is a danger of concentration."

But he also urged caution, saying the speed of innovation in technology and tastes could ultimately cut some of the biggest firms down to size.


From The Guardian
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