Google is getting sued for anticompetitive tactics by the US Department of Justice

Written by Stuart Thomas on Wed, Oct 21, 2020 11:45 AM

Some of the biggest tech companies in the world are soon to be getting into trouble as they are getting called out on their monopolistic practices. Google is the next target it seems as it has just had an antitrust lawsuit filed against it by the US Department of Justice as well as 11 other US States.

Google has willfully maintained and abused its monopoly power in general search services through anticompetitive and exclusionary distribution agreements that lock up the preset default positions for search access points on browsers, mobile devices, computers, and other devices,” the lawsuit says.

For many years, Google has used anticompetitive tactics to maintain and extend its monopolies in the markets for general search services, search advertising, and general search text advertising—the cornerstones of its empire.

This is a pretty big deal for many of us, as Google has long remained a dominant leader in the market. And as well as know from watching Nvidia vs AMD or even Intel vs AMD, competition is good not just for consumers, but for innovation as a whole.

What this lawsuit is essentially saying is that Google is inhibiting the growth of healthy competition, as “no one can feasibly challenge Google’s dominance in search and search advertising,” said Attorney General William P. Barr.

Of course, Google has already responded to the lawsuit in a recent blog post by Kent Walker, the SVP of Global Affairs at Google, calling it a “deeply flawed lawsuit” which would actually hurt consumers rather than helping them.

This lawsuit would do nothing to help consumers. To the contrary, it would artificially prop up lower-quality search alternatives, raise phone prices, and make it harder for people to get the search services they want to use,” Walker said.

Walker continued to explain that Google’s agreements with device makers like Apple are “no different” from the agreements other companies use to distribute their own software, further explaining that Google’s agreements have repeatedly passed antitrust reviews.

But he didn’t stop there, Walker made the argument that consumers don’t just use Google because they have to, but because they actually want to, citing that Mozilla changed its default search engine to Yahoo, but many users changed it back to Google because they prefer it, and that it is incredibly easy to change the search engine to another one not run by Google on the Google Chrome web browser.

We understand that with our success comes scrutiny, but we stand by our position. American antitrust law is designed to promote innovation and help consumers, not tilt the playing field in favor of particular competitors or make it harder for people to get the services they want.

The last bit of information that is absolutely crucial to this lawsuit - and could have a serious impact on Google and their products - includes an order to possibly sell off some of Google’s assets in order to “cure any anticompetitive harm.

What do you think? What Google products do you use daily? Is Google right in this situation? Will this just harm consumers? Or has Google been taking advantage of its monopoly? Who do you think will win? And if this lawsuit goes through, how will this affect Google and it’s consumers? Let us know your thoughts!

Do you use any Google products?

Do you think Google is actively anticompetitive?

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16:58 Nov-22-2020

I think the problem here is not the search engine, but the adds linked to a search egine. If Google is such a dominant force they basically have a monopoly on the online add market. This means they can lower the price they pay sites for displaying there ads as much as they want.

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17:01 Nov-22-2020

Ofcouse there products and there search engine are some of the best, they have some of the best coders and engineers in the world. It's not those programs that are the problem but the underlying infastructure they created for monotizing the internet and the power they get from this.

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10:11 Oct-22-2020

I've tried using other search engines. I always come back to Google though because it's simply the better option. Other search engines just need to improve their product, not bring Google down.

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14:22 Oct-23-2020

If you want google like search results without the tracking try Startpage.

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01:34 Oct-22-2020

For those interested in another point of view (for the whole google drama), watch this video from Louis Rossmann.
link

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01:23 Oct-22-2020

Use YouTube so guess I'm guilty in that department.

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17:44 Oct-21-2020

If you're going to sue someone for anti-competitive practices..... how about Epic who are actually going to developers and BRIBING them to keep them off other platforms..... something that other game stores ARE NOT doing. Google got big because people want to use it, not because they're being forced... Epic is TRYING to force you!

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17:49 Oct-21-2020

Also this reminds me of the days when Microsoft was sued for the same because they didn't pack their Operating system with Netscape and AOL? Why should they have to ship THEIR product with 3rd party apps? You could have ALWAYS downloaded them, there was nothing in Windows preventing them from working! That's what this case reminds me of......... Why didn't they go after Intel who was going around to PC manufacturers and BRIBING and THREATENING them to keep AMD CPUs out of their machines?!?!

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16:57 Oct-21-2020

I guess, covid hit law business hard, since they're trying to come up with bullsh*t reasons to sue somebody.

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13:18 Oct-21-2020

wait wait wait... so google makes the best search engine> everyone uses it because yahoo/Bing/ask Jeeves are ****e> google is forced to sell off parts of their work/company because the done a good job and the others didn't?
am i understanding this correctly?

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20:03 Oct-21-2020

It sounds a lot like that, doesn't it?
I think it's bigger though. Google is so powerful now it doesn't just play the game anymore, it changes the rules of the game itself. And I think that's where it gets a bit iffy.

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21:17 Oct-21-2020

sounds like everyone else's problem not googles to me. if they done a better job this wouldn't be the case right? and surely if you do a bad job you go bust, and rightly so. no one should get anywhere from doing a half-arsed job

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12:39 Oct-21-2020

Ultimately its the customer's choice. I have to agree with Walker. I use Google because I WANT TO. And if i want to change the default search engine within Chrome itself, I can do that as well and its so easy.

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13:01 Oct-21-2020

Me too....

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01:25 Oct-22-2020

While the choice may be there, they're not very upfront when it comes to viable alternatives.

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