The Big Four (Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon) are much more than successful companies. Not only are they technological and economic giants, but behind each of them lies a philosophy of infinite expansion on which the future of humanity depends.
Amazon is especially unique. In the mid-1990s, thanks to the expansion of the internet, Amazon saw the opportunity to create a giant virtual bookstore, later adding DVDs, then everything else. Currently, it is the second largest employer in the U.S. The website offers 600 million products and dominates 40% of all internet trade in the country. It is also the provider of nearly half of all cloud computing and competes with Netflix in the distribution of streaming films. Amazon’s expansion is based on the development of big data and artificial intelligence, and it will soon launch 3,000 satellites to provide high speed internet on a global scale.
The grand vision of founder Jeff Bezos is to set sights high, both literally and figuratively. In his graduation speech, Bezos told of his dream to build colonies in space. This is the idea that recently inspired his project, Blue Origin, to save humanity from overpopulation and destruction.
In contrast to Facebook, Amazon has a good public image. However, it has been the object of criticism for paying almost no taxes, various cases of labor malpractice, abuse of its dominant market position and unfair competition in its virtual marketplace.
A few years ago, Bezos acquired the venerated newspaper, The Washington Post, a company which President Donald Trump has previously denounced for spreading fake news. Bezos believes that this could be the reason why just a few days ago Amazon was denied the $10 billion contract to provide cloud services to various U.S. government agencies.
The ambivalent relationship between technology companies and the government is further complicated by the need to regulate them. It is an almost impossible task and a huge challenge for the law, the economy and politics.