Letter: Politicians need to recognize the good tech companies are doing

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit in Salt Lake City on Friday, Jan. 31, 2020.

Many Utah businesses have suffered greatly during the COVID-19 pandemic. In these times where economic doom was a reality for many businesses like mine, digital tools have been a literal lifeline to help keep them running. The evidence of their benefit has shown to be crystal clear according to a recent study: during the pandemic, digitally advanced businesses retained customers at a rate that was five times better than less digitally advanced businesses, and acquired new customers at a 20 times better rate compared to their nondigitally advanced counterparts. This was crucial in preventing the most disastrous scenario for Utah’s small businesses.

Without these digital tools, it is safe to say millions of businesses, even mine, could have been forced to close up shop without their help. We’re also approaching a new normal, which will utilize digital tools as a crucial part of every business, large or small. Politicians need to recognize the good that tech companies are doing in our communities and their efforts to help small businesses. Continuing to attack tech companies with accusations of monopolization and censorship while they try to provide (often free) digital tools to businesses in need is an extremely bad idea.

Joe Maughan, Salt Lake City

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