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The world is finally taking Big Tech seriously. Canada should step up

By Byron Holland
President and CEO

The way forward is to rally the disparate actions of our global allies into a united front.

This article first appeared in The National Post on October 30, 2020.

Last week the U.S. Department of Justice filed an antitrust suit against Google over its alleged search monopoly. The move came on the heels of a Congressional committee investigation into the anticompetitive practices of the world’s biggest tech firms — Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple — and is widely believed to be the U.S.’s first salvo in a long battle to rein in these global platforms.

Similar reports from our international peers, including the U.K., the E.U. and Australia, have warned that governments must urgently tackle the problems that Big Tech pose for economies and democracies everywhere. While many of these jurisdictions have taken concrete steps to rein these giants in, a question looms: what can a middle power like Canada do at home and abroad to ensure our technology is fit for democracy?

While Canada has no jurisdiction over the corporate structure of these U.S.-based tech giants, we do have other legislative tools at our disposal to promote trust online — and allies we can call upon to create new democratic safeguards for our increasingly digital work.

Click here to continue reading in The National Post.

About the author
Byron Holland

Byron Holland (MBA, ICD.D) is the president and CEO of the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA), the national not-for-profit best known for managing the .CA domain and developing new cybersecurity, DNS, and registry services.

Byron is an expert in internet governance and a seasoned entrepreneur. Under Byron’s leadership, CIRA has become one of the leading ccTLDs in the world, with over 3 million domains under management. Over the past decade, he has represented CIRA internationally and held numerous leadership positions within ICANN. He currently sits on the Board of Directors for TORIX, and is a member of the nominations committee for ARIN. He lives in Ottawa with his wife, two sons, and their Australian shepherd, Marley.

The views expressed in this blog are Byron’s opinions on internet-related issues, and are not necessarily those of the organization.