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The nobility of competition

You have an idea that will change the world. You launch it and it does change the world. Then you grow and keep growing. Your interests become more and more commercial. Lack of competition means you can hide your mistakes; it means that you are no longer have a harsh critic to keep you honest. Your culture is based on reverence. You are hungry but are you humble? We now live in a world of media titans -

Google, Facebook, Amazon...and it creates its own set of problems. I firmly believe is competition, it makes everything better. These massive companies exist to make money. They offer us utility, and in exchange we give up our privacy. Brian Bernstein is a tech journalist who wrote an interesting piece on Facebook: We need more alternatives. He compares Facebook to the issues TV faced early on and how it overcame them through increased competition: Why are we finally now in what’s often called a golden age of television, with culturally influential, sophisticated shows that don’t insult our intelligence? It’s not because broadcasters stopped airing schlock. It’s because the audience is more fragmented than ever—thanks to the rise of public broadcasting and cable TV and streaming services and many other challenges to big networks. It required a flourishing of choices rather than a reliance on those huge networks to become better versions of themselves. As Zuckerberg wrote in February, “History has had many moments like today.”

I could make the same type of argument for Google and other titans. Don't get me wrong, I respect these companies tremendously and think they have changed the world in incredible ways; but with everything there is a price and we all need to be aware of the trade off.

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