The volume of the uploads is staggering — for what it says about the power of the platforms and our collective desire to share horrific acts of violence. How footage of the murder of at least 50 innocent people was broadcast and distributed globally dredges up some deeply uncomfortable questions for the biggest social networks, including the existential one: Is the ability to connect at such speed and scale a benefit or a detriment to the greater good?
That question is easy to answer. The ability to connect at speed and scale is a clear detriment to the greater good.
We need to find ways to break up platforms like Facebook, Google, and YouTube. I am skeptical that it is possible to break them up in the traditional way, despite plausible arguments that they are monopolistic.
The best bet is probably via data privacy laws and regulations. Giving users explicit and unequivocal ownership of their personal data and the use thereof might introduce enough friction to break the business models of these companies and kill them off.