The greedy giants

greedy giant

This is how I call a private corporation of a certain size, especially when it gets more powerful than a national government.

private corporation

A corporation whose mission is to protect and grow the capital of its owners and to increase their revenue.

Every private corporation is –by definition– an immortal unscrupulous greedy institution. They are of same nature as public corporation : they exist only in our minds, they are nothing but legal fictions, immaterial ideas that we, the humans, “created” by giving them a name and allowing them to exist as legal persons. But there is a fundamental difference between private and public corporations: their reason of being.

Let’s look at the mission statements of three big corporations:

  • “Our mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Google

  • “Microsoft is a technology company whose mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. We strive to create local opportunity, growth, and impact in every country around the world.” (via geekwire.com)

  • “The mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to empower and engage people around the world to collect and develop educational content under a free license or in the public domain, and to disseminate it effectively and globally.” (wikimediafoundation.org)

These three mission statements sound similar in nature. They all declare to fight for a noble cause. What they don’t say –because it is obvious– is their ultimate mission, their fundamental motivation and reason of being. Google and Microsoft are private corporations, which means that their ultimate mission is to make financial profit to be shared among its owners, the shareholders. The Wikimedia Foundation, by contrast, is a public corporation. Any financial profit that may result from their activity is being reinvested into the corporation’s mission.