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When it Comes to DC Lobbying, Google Outspends Big Tech Cohort–and the Peoples Republic of China

January 24, 2019 Comments off

As Susan Crawford tells us:

I was brought up and trained in the Internet Age by people who really believed that nation states were on the verge of crumbling…and we could geek around it.  We could avoid it.  These people were irrelevant.

It’s rather stark when you see it.  We all know that Google is a government-level power and is enjoys a level of political influence on par with many countries, well ahead of its commercial rivals in the U.S.–and this doesn’t even count the tens of millions it spends buying academics and librarians or supporting the EFFs, Engines, R Streets and Fight for the Futures of the world.

chartoftheday_10393_lobbying_expenditure_of_tech_companies_n

Whether you take Big Tech as a group or individually, these companies–and especially Google–spend like they were countries.

Google’s lobbying spend compares favorably to South Korea’s spend in the U.S., which is the biggest foreign lobbyist according to Open Secrets:

south korea lobbying

And to the People’s Republic of China U.S. lobbying:

china lobbying 2017

For Article 13 comparison, Germany and France came in at the end of the pack:

germany lobbying 2017

Germany Lobbying Spend 2017 and 2018

 

france lobbying 2017

France Lobbying Spend 2017 and 2018

When you consider that all of the Big Tech lobbying spenders in the graph except Apple are also in the Internet Association and indirectly in the MIC Coalition, many things become clear.  It means that Michael Beckerman, the head of the Internet Association who apparently has some modeling aspirations looking very Zoolanderesque,  gets to buy nice things.  But then as a wise man once said, brown shoes don’t make it.

Michael Beckerman

 

Is Michael Beckerman Wearing Your Safe Harbor?

May 29, 2018 1 comment

As MTP readers will recall, I prefer to think of Big Tech’s various safe harbors like the CDA, DMCA and now the MMA as an income transfer.  It’s not that the money isn’t getting made, it’s just not getting made by the people who created the value.

For example, when Google profits from selling ads against infringing videos, that money doesn’t disappear, it just doesn’t go to the artist.  So where does it go?

Well…according to a recent article in Modern Luxury “Men of Style,” it appears to go into Michael Beckerman’s shoes.  Michael Beckerman is the CEO of the Internet Association, Google’s main lobbying shillery in DC and long time revolving door man.  (Picture below with floral decoration courtesy of Wednesday Addams.)

Michael Beckerman

That’s right–$4,950 shoes.  But no socks.  (Or 6,689,189 YouTube streams.)  Now that’s what I call an income transfer.  Looks like DMCA safe harbor on his feet, CDA for his watch–what will he buy himself as a reward for the MMA reachback?  Maybe a little poker in Vegas with his buddies?

 

 

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