Social media giants in ‘trouble’ if advertisers go after them, analyst warns

Strike a 'good balance' between freedom of expression, diversity and shareholders, Ray Wang advises

Constellation Research founder Ray Wang warned censorship could land social media giants in hot water with advertisers.

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The Silicon Valley-based researcher, who studies disruptive business and exponential technology trends, told FOX Business’ “Mornings with Maria” on Tuesday the issue is “problematic in general” but striking a “good balance” between what is freedom of expression, diversity and shareholders could help them recover.

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RAY WANG: “These are private companies and they have every right to enforce their terms of service, but the challenge is it's not being enforced uniformly and it feels like a suppression of free speech. And what happens is when you do that and you're an ad-supported network, if you start losing millions of active users, investors will react, they'll start dumping your stock.

We spend a lot of time looking at who are the digital giants ... and how their models work. In fact, I'm putting something out in July regarding to that… What we've noticed is that because they're in positions of duopoly, in some cases monopoly, power, there's a lot of… of big decisions on their end. And what that means is we need alternatives. We need opportunities to get in there. And when you think about market access and the ability for companies to be able to succeed in creating alternatives, they're being squashed.

In the long run, I think this was problematic in general. Parler might have a shot at coming back if they can find a server that will host them, but they might be charged on grounds that, hey, they're operating legally somewhere else or they're operating in a way that's not fit. And, you know, for whatever the administrations think, that's a challenge… But in general, these social networks, generally, these digital giants, they have to strike a good balance between what is freedom of expression, what is happening in terms of diversity of thought and, of course, the shareholders. So if the advertisers go after them, they're in trouble.”

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