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  1. Donald Trump threatens with punitive tariffs against EU and France following the approval in the French parliament of a 3% digital services tax on internet giants like Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple. So why this strong response from the US and Donald Trump? I think it’s because of two main reasons: Firstly, and the most obvious reason IMO, is because the US political establishment is heavily influenced by corporate lobbyists – TBH the whole US political discourse has been profoundly corporatized in recent decades – and that includes lobbying from the US tech sector. Just see this article from the Guardian on how the tech industry now dominates the US lobbying industry. Secondly, these tech giants are a central part of the extensive and global spy network that the US government manage against both its enemies and allies. Leaks have for example shown how NSA's top-secret spy program Prism has direct access to Google Apple and Facebook servers. Obviously, any perceived threats against these tech giants cannot be tolerated by the US government – Trump’s response is just his usually blunt honesty/stupidity.
  2. How much is your data actually worth? It's worth so much that Google is paying Apple billions to be the default search engine on the iPhone. Last year Google paid Apple $9 billion and in 2019 they will pay a whopping $12 billion to remain Safari's default search engine on Apple devices. Google to Pay Apple $12B to Remain Safari's Default Search: Report FORTUNE.COM The report also said it's likely a fraction of what Google gets out of the deal. That's crazy! Spending $12+ billion to get people to use a "free" search engine and service.
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