Libertarians will tell conservatives that this doesn’t matter. “Build your own Facebook! Build your own Twitter!” But Facebook and Twitter are the most powerful media companies on earth, and most other media companies have become dependent on them. And this is not going to stop with social networks. The next frontier is payment processors. Good luck launching your next direct-to-consumer subscription product when your most passionate fans can’t promote it on Facebook and Twitter and you can’t accept PayPal, Visa, or Mastercard.
Your daddy’s GOP, the one we often imagine was more devoted to free markets, would not have put up with enormous American companies like Ford and IBM working openly against them. Major corporations often developed fastidious conventions for appearing non-partisan. Those rules are gone.
This isn’t a counsel of despair. There is plenty of work to be done. And conservatives should continue to build whatever they can. Human beings were made to create.
But there is no upside to the discovery that the most powerful media companies can throttle you without warning. There’s only a big ugly fight.