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A Tortoise File

Tech States: Amazon

The tech giants have as much money and influence as nation states. What if we reported on these companies like countries?

Tech States: Amazon

First published
Monday 1 June 2020

Last updated
Wednesday 19 May 2021

Why this story?

Amazon is more than a company – it is a superpower. And like the other tech giants that now shape our everyday lives it has global influence, like a nation state. But even by the standards of Apple, Google and Facebook, Amazon stands apart.

It is bigger by market capitalisation, by the number of individual customers and by the number of companies it counts as clients. By 2023 analysts expect it to become the world’s first $2 trillion company. It does everything – it’s the everything store. And in the time of Covid-19, its influence has only grown.

In this, the second instalment of our Tech States project, we are turning to the United States of Amazon and taking a road trip through its vast federated superpower to investigate its ideology, its government and its policies, from domestic to foreign, economic to environmental. We ask: what is it for? Basia Cummings and James Harding, editors