I’m not even kidding. There’s a reason, after all, why I host my blog on a private server I pay directly for, why I don’t use Facebook,1 and why my tweets auto-delete after a few months.

That’s all small potatoes, though. The feudal consolidation of the web isn’t inevitable, but the only thing that will break it up is the rigorous application of government regulation. It’s happened before in other sectors (e.g. telecommunications, rail) so there’s no reason it couldn’t happen online. Well, “no reason” except for the fact that decades of ideological collusion—backed up by big lobbying dollars—from tech companies and right-wing politicians alike has conspired to gut both the ability of governments to regulate, as well as the public expectation that governments should

  1. Except to, begrudgingly, message friends who don’t use other platforms. []