by Mike Masnick
Fri, Oct 12th 2012 2:30pm
Reuters is reporting that 4 out of 5 FTC Commissioners have decided they have enough evidence to go after Google for violating antitrust laws to "hurt its rivals." Details remain sparse, but it will be interesting to see any specifics once they're out, and how they show any kind of consumer harm. From what's been said in the past, it really feels like this is yet another case of going after a company because it's big, rather than because of any demonstrable problem. Tim Wu, who's been advising the FTC, has argued in the past that all you have to be is big to be a monopolist, but I don't see how that makes any sense. As we've discussed before, no one has provided a reasonable suggestion as to why Google should need to promote other search engines. Especially in this day and age when different services are eating away at Google from a variety of angles (Apple and Facebook have been quite successful), and considering that if the search results are bad, it's easy to switch to another search engine (I regularly use DuckDuckGo myself these days), I'm really curious as to what the harm here is. It sounds like we may find out soon.
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