Banks and Tech Companies Jockey for Economic Control

Source: The American Prospect
by Terri Friedline

“After Mark Zuckerberg announced the rebranding of Facebook to Meta, reports indicated that the tech giant planned to open brick-and-mortar retail stores to showcase its new products. Meta needs people to try out virtual reality headsets, gloves, and clothing in order to sell them on Zuckerberg’s vision for the metaverse. This follows Amazon opening kiosks and retail stores a few years ago and recently announcing plans to open department stores. After forcing its storefront competitors out of business, Amazon is taking advantage of the available real estate. The tech giants’ rush to brick-and-mortar stores interested me. For over a decade, I’d been listening to banks justify closing branches to cut costs by contending that people preferred to manage their money via computers and phones. Online and mobile banking were supposed to be easier and more convenient, especially since everyone was presumed to have a high-speed internet connection.” (01/12/22)