Google, Facebook Pose 'Existential Threat' To The News Industry: Ex-BuzzFeed Chief

Google, Facebook and Apple exert so much control over what information reaches consumers of news that it's 'crippling' the news industry, according to former BuzzFeed News Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton, who was laid off in January amid a spate of purges. 

"Google and Facebook and Apple they control so much of the ability to get your information out there, to get your stories out and then they control so much of the ad revenue coming back in that’s it’s crippling the industry again," Stanton told Hill.TV.

"I think the biggest problem is … we have these sort of monopolistic companies that control all ends of the advertising," he said, adding "That’s what I think is really hurting us right now."

Stanton co-founded the Save Journalism Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to combating the 'existential threat' posed by tech giants. 

High-quality journalism has been recognized since America’s founding as fundamental to the functioning of our democracy. But now, journalism in America is facing an existential threat from the monopolistic control of tech giants like Google, Facebook, and Apple. Big tech’s dominance over the digital advertising market and their unrivaled capacity to monetize its platforms are having drastic effects on journalism as a whole.

The group claims that 2,400 journalists have lost their jobs so far in 2019, and that 32,000 newsroom employees have been laid off over the past decade. 

Save Journalism also says that 63% of digital ad revenue is controlled by Google, and that 90% of all new digital ad revenue on an annual basis is "swallowed by Google and Facebook."