New Money Review podcast

New Money Review podcast

How the internet went wrong

September 29, 2022

“Competition is for losers,” Paypal founder, early Facebook investor and bitcoin enthusiast Peter Thiel once said.

But now the monopoly power of the big tech firms has outgrown even Thiel’s wildest dreams.

In the latest New Money Review podcast, I ask Vili Lehdonvirta, professor of economic sociology and digital social research at the Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, whether we can loosen the tech platforms’ grip on money and power.

Lehdonvirta is the author of a new book, “Cloud empires: how digital platforms are overtaking the state and how we can regain control”.

In the podcast, we cover the reasons for the rise of huge internet companies like Google, Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Tencent and Alibaba.

We discuss how the libertarian ideas of the early internet have long been lost, to be replaced by concerns over excessive corporate control and rising economic, social and political inequality.

How should the increasingly powerful global digital economy be governed?

Listen to the podcast to hear more on:

  • the lost optimism of the early internet
  • why eBay had to abandon its laissez-faire approach to managing its marketplace
  • why the internet giants’ CEOs are now more powerful than heads of state
  • how the digital gatekeepers now regulate markets for private profit
  • how cryptocurrency lost its P2P promise and recreated the banking system
  • addressing the bigtechs’ economic and political power
  • the limits of public utility regulation and competition law
  • how nations can deal with transnational platforms
  • why internet platform users may end up governing these systems