“It’s not a tricky question,” said Mr. Poe blushingly. “You know, you make $100 million a year, you have to be able to answer that question.”
It wasn’t entirely a confusing question: Google Maps and other services are available on iPhones, and location tracking by Google services is a serious concern for privacy advocates. But on social media and in some media reports, Mr. Po was ridiculed for his apparent confusion over Apple and Google technologies.
Representative Steve Cohen, a Democrat from Tennessee, described Google as a “tool” and suggested Pichai create an online school for users to understand the search engine where they can be assigned a Google representative. But not like phone customer service at Comcast, he said, where you’re stopped for 30 minutes and “find someone you can’t understand.”
Another example of boomer Luddite lawmakers stumbling around technology, the audience quipped.
The belly flop from the hearing room stage helped the company’s market dominance and headlines from data collection. Since then, criticism from the tech giant has only intensified. But despite a bipartisan agreement that tech companies have acted rudely and deserve more oversight, none of the bills discussed at a hearing four years ago have passed.
It turns out that hearing the world’s most powerful business executives is a lot easier than making laws. Very bright lines of partisan disagreement appear when writing rules that restrict how much data can be collected by the platform, whether consumers can sue the sites for defamation, and whether regulators include Amazon, Apple, Google, and Facebook. May slow down the march of dominance.
“Hyperpartisanship is the most powerful force supporting the status quo, and the big tech platforms work hard to douse the flames,” said David Chevern, president of the News Media Alliance, a media lobbying group that aimed at stronger antitrust laws. The emphasis is from the technical forum.
Meta, the parent company of Instagram and Facebook, has said it supports the rules. All six cryptocurrency executives who testified recently also said that they also support some government surveillance of their businesses.