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How the blockchain will break up Big Tech

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How the blockchain will break up Big Tech

The Big Tech trust-busting conversation has a shelf-life.

Jon Stokes,

5 min read
3 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

The blockchain will empower users, and end big tech’s monopoly on the internet.

Editorial Rating



  • Analytical
  • Visionary
  • Hot Topic


Tech blogger and anti-monopolist Jon Stokes has spent a lot of time thinking about trust-busting big tech. Large corporations controlling application programming interfaces (APIs) with users tables leverage their scope and power, making competition from smaller companies virtually impossible. But the blockchain is poised to end all that, with a massive users table that will encompass the entire internet. Stokes explains how the power struggle over proprietary user data will soon shift from the corporate silo back to the user. Trust-busting will no longer be relevant in the big tech universe.


Users tables hold valuable user data that essentially run the whole online attention economy.

Currently, big tech’s internet monopoly relies on the *aaS (as a service) application stack, made up of silos containing users tables.

These tables allow a company to track their users’ activity, provide support and push marketing. In exchange for user access, the company monetizes this data to draw investment and sell ads. However, the users table’s most valuable attribute is access to “network effects,” which provide “lock-in.” Leaving the herd that inhabits the platform means giving up the value the herd provides. And the more users you have, the more users you attract. The entire attention economy...

About the Author

Jon Stokes created Doxa on Substack in 2020. He is the co-founder of Ars Technica, which was bought by Condé Nast in 2008. He has worked for Wired Digital as cloud editor and as deputy editor for The Prepared magazine.

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