Why Does Onison NOT Store Your Data in the Cloud?
Onison has been warning about the risk associated with publishing mission critical data in the cloud for many years: our concerns were based on the tremendous advantages that could be gained with vertical integration and monopolization through traditional corporate acquisitions. While it was obvious that data would become a key industry of the future, it remained a mystery how to monetize it or just how dangerous it would become.
With the rapid progress in the convergence of cloud computing with Artificial Intelligence, our warnings have become a stark reality.
Mining Your Data Without Your Knowledge
Social media, search, or other platforms are new industries in which few companies emerged as the dominant players. Originally, free or cheap platform offerings were made in the hopes of attracting advertisement revenues. Indeed, after a long period of rejection by established advertisers, cash flow from such initiatives became sizable. These platforms base their business models partially or wholly on bartering access to their services for your information. Consumers and businesses alike are mostly in the dark about which information is being collected or how it is used.
Consumers, organizations, and lawmakers need to be aware that the harm may not come to consumers and businesses in traditional ways as regulated through anti-trust laws. Whichever other services they may sell, important portions of the revenues of these new industries come from leveraging your data. It is through the usage of this information that fair competition can be stifled.
Regulatory plans are being discussed in the United States that want to break up some of America’s most prominent tech companies and undo some tech mergers. This includes Amazon, Google, Apple and Facebook. Part of the proposed legislation seeks to prohibit platforms from providing a commerce marketplace and participating in that marketplace at the same time.
Understanding the reasoning of such plans is of great importance for all organizations that evaluate to manage their data in the cloud.
The unfair competitive advantages that are handed to such combined marketplace provider-participants (MAPPAs) are incredible.
They possess data about the success of specific products or product classes long before anyone else can learn these facts through the ‘traditional’ market feedback mechanism. Hence, such MAPPAs can pick and clone before the original products ever had a chance to take off in the marketplace.
Moreover, MAPPAs can respond to price adjustments by unsuspecting participants at the same moment. Their ability to automatically respond to changes in pricing amounts to ‘indirect’ price fixing, which, in Onison’s opinion, operates already in illegal territory.
By directing traffic to their own offerings (or away from yours), these scammers can go even further: they can rig the bidding process to their own profit. MAPPAs sit in a position not unlike the one of an insider-trader (still legal, stock hi-speed trading is the same sort of market scam that puts ordinary traders in a systemic disadvantage). That creates market power within these platforms that represent a novel kind of cartel. It appears at first sight that MAPPAs enable and facilitate competition. In reality, their conduct is anti-competitive and causes harm directly in ‘restraint of trade’ for its participants.
Victims of such MAPPAs are typically smaller businesses that are unable to fend for themselves, even in the face of blatant patent or copyright infringements. The atrocious behavior of MAPPAs can crush the innovation power of the original supplier.