Google May Be Targeted in FTC Antitrust Probe


Google is on the short list of companies the Federal Trade Commission is considering for investigation, though an antirust probe hasn’t been launched just yet. The news comes on the heels of a complaint filed in Europe by Microsoft last week, saying Google creates unfair competition in the search engine market. Google’s dominance of search has already been under investigation in Europe since the fall.

The reason the FTC hasn’t opened up an investigation just yet hinges on a decision by the Justice Department to challenge Google’s acquisition of ITA Software Inc., an airline ticketing software company. That $700 million deal is still on the tablet, and until it is squashed or given the green light, the FTC will hold off.

[via Reuters]

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  1. Microsoft is upset? How ironic….

  2. How does Google create an “unfair competition in the search engine market” when it’s the user’s choice to type either bing or google into the URL bar to do a search? Google does nothing that Microsoft can’t. If Microsoft wants more features in their search, then they can add them.

    1. Google pays browser-makers to use Google as the default search engine.

  3. if anything google has been more helpful with more local results than bing. for instance, if you type in “pizza restaurants” they both bring up all the restaurants in your local area. but if you look more closely, the results from google will only require one or two turns at most if you’re driving or walking. bing, on the other hand, give results with a local circle rather most convenient route. so yah, don’t blame me if rather use Google search than bing. i’m sure bing is useful for other searches, but my search engine of choice is google.

  4. Did everyone forget that Bing was spotted using Google search results?

    And, honestly, people are mad because Google’s search results are too good, and so everyone uses the search engine that works best…?

  5. Maybe Microsoft could level the playing field by bundling their own browser with their operating system that’s pre-set to their own search engine… Er, wait.

  6. Google = BOSS Microsoft = Cheese with your WHINE?

  7. Anti-trust on Google? What about Ipod and music?

  8. Until Google charges to run a search, I don’t see what the issue is. I have a choice to freely use Google or Bing, unlike in the 90’s when MS made IE a part of the OS and you couldn’t remove it 100%. You also had to PAY to buy Windows. I don’t see the issue here. :O

    1. Google doesn’t charge you.. they sell ads.. That’s the issue, they are better than their competition, so the competition has trouble selling ads.. And they are so bad at it, that they have to pay people like Verizon, to use their search engine.. which as we saw, went over really well with consumers..

  9. User choice is what drivers this. Google doesnt even advertise their search engine but microsoft does and yet people still use google more. This is what I hate about some companies, when they can’t compete they dont try to improve or innovate the cry like a baby. They then either sue or file a complaint.

    1. google “advertises” it in other ways.
      default setting in browsers(opera, chrome, and firefox probably too)
      default search engine for android
      google toolbar included in various programs for windows, which uses google search for search results.

      1. This can all be said of Bing, too…

  10. It doesn’t matter what the findings are… there’s now a verb in the OED and all subsequent dictionaries that will likely be with us forever. That verb is ‘google’… it is synonomous with the word ‘search.’ To google something, means to search on the internet for that item. They can’t be faulted for providing better service, or having a more recognizable name or logo. Every phone company in America still uses the old AT&T Bell logo for a reason… even tho they have new, recognizable logos, such as the globe (death star), the V (check mark), the Q (circle), and even Bell Canada… they all still use the same old logo on their trucks, bills, telephone booths (if you can find one), etc… “google” will be with us forever, and there is choice in the interwebs search market unlike telephones.

  11. This coming from Microsoft who places its IE web browser, with Bing, on your home page when you buy a new PC or install Windows. And Microsoft was at one point going through something similar based on its competition and sales tactics being unfair. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!!!

  12. Unlike Microsoft tying OEM hardware manufacturers to exclusive agreements, anyone is free to start their own search engine. Set up your servers, write your software, and make it available to the world. If your search engine is better, people will flock to it and away from Google.

    It’s happened before. People went from Lycos and a few others to Alta Vista because it was much better. Then Google came along and people went from Alta Vista to Google because it was much better.

    Bing is even bundled with some phones, and with all Internet Explorer browsers (which are bundled with Windows, which are bundled with ALL PC’s). If that isn’t enough to make Bing a success, then what is?

  13. Pot calling the kettle black. You cannot delete Explorer from Windows without losing some of its functionality or the ability to access some websites. I can see the judge laughing now.

  14. Has anyone looked at what PepsiCO owns? It puts Google to shame.

  15. I would like to point out DirectX, .NET, and gaming in general when it comes to OS’s. I feel Micrisoft has a monopoly on PC gaming because of these, and would like to see them implemented into Linux asap. Maybe then, will Microsoft get any pity from the masses.

  16. Antirust? “Deal is still on the tablet”? LMAO..get your mind off gadgets!

  17. like Microsoft saw this article coming, i see a bing commercial with Google probe typed in the search field! xD

  18. This is why it was a mistake to rely on the government to go after Microsoft. Netscape, Real Player, the linux community, etc couldn’t create a better product so they wanted the government to break down Microsoft for them.
    Just create a better product! That’s what Google and Apple have done.

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