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经济学人:站在风口浪尖的Facebook(2)

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The Facebook lawsuits centre on its acquisitions. The firm maintained its monopoly in personal social-networking by systematically buying up potential competitors, both contend—notably Instagram in 2012 and WhatsApp in 2014. A smoking gun could be Onavo, an Israeli firm Facebook bought in 2013—to protect user data, the firm said. The suits claim it in fact used Onavo to track rival apps’ popularity and select acquisition targets. Another alleged anti-competitive practice was blocking rival app developers from its platform. As consumer harm is hard to prove against big tech’s mostly free products, the suits try a novel argument: that damage is done to users’ privacy and advertisers’ choice.

Facebook的诉讼重点在于其收购上。Facebook通过系统性收购潜在竞争对手来维持其在个人社交网络领域的垄断地位,尤其是在2012年收购Instagram,2014年收购WhatsApp。Facebook称,确凿的证据可能是2013年为保护用户数据而收购的以色列公司Onavo。诉讼称,Facebook实际上利用Onavo跟踪竞争对手应用程序的受欢迎程度,并选择收购目标。另一项所谓的反竞争行为是阻止竞争对手的应用开发商进入其平台。由于很难证明消费者使用大型科技公司大多免费的产品时受到了损害,因此诉讼尝试了一个新颖的论点:Facebook损害了用户隐私和广告商的选择。

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Facebook will argue that its market is social media, which is broader and more competitive than social-networking. Tik- Tok, a Chinese-owned short-video app, is now more popular than Instagram among American teenagers. The internal Facebook emails on which the lawsuits hinge hardly paint a picture of a lazy monopolist; Mr Zuckerberg and his lieutenants see competitive threats everywhere. Facebook can also argue that breaking it up is wellnigh impossible. Last year it started integrating Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger more deeply. And the FTC’s complaint fails to mention it cleared the Instagram and WhatsApp deals. The government “now wants a do-over”, sending a chilling warning to American business that “no sale will ever be final”, Facebook said.

Facebook将辩称其市场是社交媒体,社交媒体比社交网络更广泛、更具竞争力。相比Instagram,中国的短视频应用程序Tik-Tok现在更受美国青少年的青睐。诉讼所依赖的Facebook内部邮件很难描绘出一个懒惰的垄断者形象,扎克伯格和他的副手们看到了无处不在的竞争威胁。Facebook也可以辩称,拆分自己几乎是不可能实现的。去年,它开始更深入地整合Instagram、WhatsApp和Messenger。而联邦贸易委员会的诉状中也没有提到,正是它自己批准了Instagram和WhatsApp的交易。Facebook称,美国政府“现在希望重整旗鼓”,这向美国商界发出了一个令人不寒而栗的警告:“任何出售都不会是最终结果”。

Markets shrugged off the news. Facebook’s shares dipped by 2%, in line with the rest of big tech. Investors either see forced divestitures as unlikely, says Brent Thill of Jefferies, an investment bank—or spy even more money to be made from spin-offs.

市场对这一消息不以为然。Facebook的股价下跌了2%,与其他大型科技公司的股价保持一致。投资银行Jefferies的布伦特·希尔表示,投资者要么认为强制剥离不太可能,要么认为自己可以从分拆中获利更多。

译文由可可原创,仅供学习交流使用,未经许可请勿转载。

重点单词   查看全部解释    
popular ['pɔpjulə]

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adj. 流行的,大众的,通俗的,受欢迎的

联想记忆
rival ['raivəl]

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n. 对手,同伴,竞争者
adj. 竞争的

联想记忆
messenger ['mesindʒə]

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n. 报信者,先驱

 
protect [prə'tekt]

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vt. 保护,投保

联想记忆
innovation [.inəu'veiʃən]

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n. 创新,革新

联想记忆
contend [kən'tend]

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vi. 奋斗,斗争,辩论
vt. 坚持认为,竞

联想记忆
social ['səuʃəl]

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adj. 社会的,社交的
n. 社交聚会

 
internal [in'tə:nəl]

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adj. 国内的,内在的,身体内部的

 
spy [spai]

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n. 间谍,侦探,侦察
vt. 侦探,看到,找

 
technical ['teknikəl]

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adj. 技术的,工艺的

 

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