As Big Tech companies continue to dominate the political landscape, a new bipartisan group has set out to challenge tech companies’ influence on the 2024 election.
According to The Hill, the “No Big Tech Money Project” has launched the “No Big Tech Money” Pledge, a campaign that asks political candidates to agree to accept no more than $200 in donations from Big Tech companies, including Microsoft, Amazon, Meta, Apple, and Google’s parent company Alphabet Inc.
The goal of the pledge is to ‘stand with people, not Big Tech’ and acknowledge the negative effects these companies have on our democracy. As a spokesperson for the No Big Tech money project states, “Big tech companies like Facebook and Google have amassed too much power and control, have hurt small businesses, and have too much influence in Washington.”
The project, ran by Emily Southard, is unique in its bipartisan support. While the Fossil Fuel Pledge brought in a few thousand Democrat signatures, the No Big Tech Pledge has “true cross-party appeal.” As Southard places it, “The pledge is a way for politicians to say enough is enough and to signal to voters that they’ll put our democracy, our small businesses, and our families over Big Tech’s corrupting influence.”
Tech companies have long been major political contributors, with contributions reaching nearly $106.2 million in 2020. Alphabet Inc spent the most, shelling out over $11.2 million in 2020.Still, some companies like Netflix still show up among the top contributors, with a reported $7.8 million in donations last year.
The House is also making strides to include legislation that will combat Big Tech’s power. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022, the House approved legislation giving states greater power in antitrust cases and increasing money for federal regulators.
The group also urged Congressional leaders in both major parties to reject donations from tech giants with a letter sent on Tuesday to both House and Senate leaders. The letter states that “As the leaders of the party caucuses and campaign arms in both Houses of Congress, taking the No Big Tech Money pledge is an important way you can help build momentum for reining in Big Tech’s corrupting influence.”
It’s clear the influence of Big Tech companies has grown too big for their britches, and the No Big Tech Money Project is just one of many steps in limiting this reach, and to help small businesses and consumers demands for fair competition in the industry. As the 2024 presidential election slowly approaches, we will see if candidates are willing to take the No Big Tech Money Pledge.
Source: The Hill