What has Big Tech ever done for me?

There’s a scene in Monty Python’s Life of Brian in which rebels conspire against the Roman occupation. They ask themselves “What have the Romans ever done for us“.

Upon reflection, they realize that the Romans brought them sanitation, medicine, education, irrigation, public health, roads, a freshwater system, baths, public order, and peace.

I get the same feeling when I read articles about Big Tech. Most commentators acknowledge that the cheap and convenient services offered by companies like Amazon and Google are good for consumers.

But pundits usually focus on the negative side of these tech giants. They treat their workers badly, they aggressively avoid taxes, they sabotage competitors, and much more. The consensus seems to be: Big Tech is good for consumers, but bad for workers, government revenue, and other businesses.

However, I’m not so sure that Google and Amazon are bad for small businesses. Here are some examples of how those firms helped me as an independent author.

  • I retrieved the 200+ references in Bankers are people, too with Google.
  • Readers from California to India find my blog with Google. Not being listed on Google kills traffic.
  • Publishers reject most manuscripts they receive, especially from authors they don’t know yet. Everybody can publish his/her book with Amazon (Createspace) for free.
  • Amazon pays higher royalties than traditional publishers do.

And that’s just Google and Amazon. I’ve also benefitted enormously from WordPress (free) and Adobe (small monthly fee) software.

I intend to advertize for my books on Facebook and Google in the near future. If you have experience with such ads, I look forward to your tips in the comments! You can also help other readers by writing a review of Bankers are people, too 🙂

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