Statements
2021

Accountable Tech Launches “Main Street Against Big Tech” Campaign to Tell Small Business Owners’ Stories

For Immediate Release
October 22, 2021
Contact: press@accountabletech.org

 

Six-Figure National Campaign Shares the Experiences of Over a Dozen Small Business Owners Across the Country

On Friday – ahead of next week’s Q3 earnings reports from Facebook, Google, and Amazon – Accountable Tech launched “Main Street Against Big Tech,” a six-figure national campaign and storytelling effort to demonstrate the variety of ways in which Big Tech squeeze and exploit small businesses across the country.

For too long, Big Tech corporations have used small business owners as a shield to protect them from real reform and accountability, cynically casting themselves as saviors of mom-and-pop shops and lifelines for entrepreneurs. But the truth is that Big Tech exploits small businesses at every step of the way by providing misleading and unreliable data, imposing hidden costs, designing confusing interfaces, making abrupt changes in their rules and algorithms, and having inadequate customer service.

“In an effort to avoid regulatory scrutiny, monopolists like Facebook, Google, and Amazon have spent millions of dollars persuading lawmakers and the public that their business products are a lifeline for small businesses when in fact the opposite is true,” said Nicole Gill, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Accountable Tech. “These corporate giants abuse their power to exploit small business owners, extracting monopoly fees for access to the digital economy and draining them of resources that would otherwise be reinvested in their communities. But now small business owners are fighting back by sharing their lived experience to expose the real relationship between Big Tech and Main Street.”

This new campaign – launched by Accountable Tech with support from the Main Street Alliance, Small Business Rising, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, and the American Economic Liberties Project – will continue to highlight stories of small business owners across industries who have experienced first-hand the ways in which Big Tech abuses its monopoly power to pad profits at their expense. Through compelling video testimonials, as well as a storybook, paid ads, and earned media, Main Street Against Big Tech will cut through the false narratives long spun up by Silicon Valley giants and reveal the truth.

Watch the Teaser Video for the Campaign

Visit the Website to Watch Videos of the Small Business Owners

View the Storybook of Small Business Owners

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Guadalupe (Lupe) Ramirez
Owner of AlterNatives Boutique
Member of the Main Street Alliance
Richmond, VA

View her video here

Lupe is the owner of AlterNatives boutique store in Richmond, Virginia. She created AlterNatives with the idea that the marketplace is a sacred space in which everyone should receive access to equal opportunity. She works directly with local and international artisans to sell their fair trade products.


David Guernsey
CEO of Guernsey Office Products
Member of Small Business Rising
Sterling, VA

View his video here

David is the CEO and Founder of Guernsey Incorporated, one of the largest independent business products dealers in the United States. They provide supply chain and procurement management services for office supplies for small and medium-sized businesses across the country.


Gina Schaefer
CEO of 13 ACE Hardware Stores
Member of Small Business Rising
Washington, DC

View her video here

Gina is the owner of 13 ACE Hardware Stores across the Virginia, Maryland, and D.C. area. She operates these stores as co-ops with ownership now shared for some stores between her and her 200+ employees, who she calls teammates.


Aaron Seyedian
Founder of Well-Paid Maids
Member of the Main Street Alliance
Takoma Park, MD

View his video here

Aaron is the CEO and Founder of Well-Paid Maids. He created Well-Paid Maids to help prove that living-wage businesses can be successful in traditionally low-paying industries.


Douglas Reynolds
Owner of The Charleston Gazette-Mail
Member of the Main Street Alliance
Charleston, WV

View his video here

Doug is the owner of HD Media, which owns several newspapers in West Virginia including The Charleston Gazette-Mail. In 2021, he sued Facebook and Google for their duopoly on digital ads that undermines local news media including his newspaper business.


Anita Thomas
Executive Director of Carolyn Dorfman Dance
Member of the Main Street Alliance
Union, NJ

View her video here

Anita is the Executive Director of Carolyn Dorfman Dance. She manages the dance company’s roughly million dollar annual budget and oversees a digital team that works on digital marketing and social media.

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