In Cyberpunk, many companies are known to be megacorporations which are fictional conglomerates that have monopolies over almost every single kind of industry and business, essentially making them part of every aspect of people’s lives. From technology, to food, to home appliances, etc; the population depends on and buys from these corporations for everything. These companies even have more power than governments, and they are usually involved in bad dealings. Looking at today, although companies aren’t exactly like mega corporations as shown in cyberpunk, there are a few companies that resembled them.
When thinking of Disney, childlike pictures and fun comes to mind, so it wouldn’t be common to associate Disney with evil doings of a mega corporation from a cyberpunk dystopia. However looking at the growth of the Disney particularly Walt Disney Studios, they have become very powerful. Presently, Disney owns many major studios: Pixar, Lucas Films, Marvel, and recently Fox Studios. With control of these studios, Disney has exerted its dominance over Hollywood, seeming to be a modern day monopoly. Each year, many of their movies are the highest grossing films of the year, and some of them aren’t natively Disney movies. This year alone, the 6 highest grossing films of the year are associated in one way or the other with Disney. The 5 highest grossing movies of all time: Avengers Endgame, Avatar, Titanic, Star Wars 7, and Avengers Infinity War are all owned now by Disney. With Disney’s new streaming services, they are increasing their power once more. As time goes on, there is no telling the amount of power they will have. Perhaps in the future, everything a person watches will be produced by Disney.
Google has come a long way from just being a search engine. Aside from being one of the most used search engines, the company has so many other uses that people use. Email, news, ads, weather, music, movies, video games, and much more, Google is almost everywhere when it comes to the internet. Aside from the internet, they are even growing with physical technology. They have their own phone, and there are reports of plans for their own car. With Google’s continue growth, they are having a massive presence on the internet; they practically are going to own it.
Amazon has it all. Besides being widely used for delivering, they are also growing in media with their streaming services, but also with technology such as Alexa. They are a combination of Disney and Google for that matter, and it doesn’t stop there. They have their own physical stores that sells numerous products, not just by them. From books to food, and some stores being automated, Amazon is taking control of many industries in fashions meant for the future. There has been many complaints about working conditions of their employees in factories which only add more to the cyberpunk element of corporations caring more about profit than their own people, not saying Amazon is, but this resembles the nature of cyberpunk businesses. There is no slowing Amazon down at any time especially with their CEO Jeff Bezos becoming the richest man alive, who knows what else they will control in the future.
With companies like Disney, Google, and Amazon, there are many more companies just like them that are taking over many different industries. It’s kind of similar to the early 1900’s where there were many monopolies that owned a lot, and had to be broken up. It’s possible that we are slowly going back to those days, at much greater heights. This is due to the reason that unlike those monopolies back in the day that dealt in such industries like oils and cars, these companies don’t settle in just one industry to have a monopoly over, they are going from industry to industry and taking over; they have multiple “monopolies”. It’s important to take in the fact that a lot of the things they deal in, are widely accepted and used by the public. The public loves the movies by Disney, the fast shipping of Amazon, and all the kinds of services of Google. Realistically, the growth of these companies isn’t necessary a bad thing, nor is it a good thing. This isn’t a debate on what should or shouldn’t happen. It’s a discussion presenting the fact that as time goes on, companies will have a bigger impact and relevancy to the daily lives of people.