It looks like Google has found itself in some incredibly hot water with nearly all 50 states now investigating the company for antitrust violations:
FOX NEWS – Less than two months after the Justice Department initiated a wide-ranging antitrust review of big tech companies, 50 U.S. states and territories, led by Texas, Monday announced their own investigation into Google’s “potential monopolistic behavior.”
The announcement closely followed one from a separate group of states Friday that disclosed an investigation into Facebook’s market dominance. The two probes widen the antitrust scrutiny of big tech companies beyond sweeping federal and congressional investigations and enforcement action by European regulators.
A key issue in the states’ probe is whether Google abuses its market dominance in online search, advertising, and mobile operating systems to unfairly gain leverage in other markets, stifling innovation and harming consumers. Although anti-conservative bias among Google’s leadership has been documented and frequently draws the ire of top Republicans, the antitrust probes do not expressly relate to those concerns.
It is 50 states and territories, but not all 50 states.
Two states aren’t participating in the investigations:
Nebraska attorney general Doug Peterson, a Republican, said at a press conference held in Washington that 50 attorneys general joining together sends a “strong message to Google.” The news conference featured a dozen Republican attorneys general plus the Democratic attorney general of Washington, D.C.
California and Alabama are not part of the investigation, although it does include the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Tara Gallegos, a spokeswoman for California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, declined to confirm or deny any state investigation and would not comment on the announcement by the other states.
When Microsoft was investigated, their antitrust violations came through the selling of a product. They tried to kill the competition through their contracts with pc manufacturers and more.
But Google doesn’t really sell a product, per se, so it will be interesting to see how they’ve tried to destroy their competition, if they are found guilty. I would imagine the biggest focus by investigators will be on their “advertising” business, since the are the biggest player in online advertising.
As Fox news points out, the antt-conservative bias isn’t really a part of these investigations. But maybe we’ll get lucky and they’ll expose it along the way…