8 States vs. Google: A Closer Take A Look At The DOJ’s Antitrust Claim

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Following the curtails of a 12,000-employee layoff on January 20th, the U.S. Department of Justice officially filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google today.

With rumors swirling about a possible lawsuit for a long time, this relocation from the DOJ is not unexpected.

The lawsuit has allegations concerning the tech company’s monopoly on the existing digital advertising ecosystem.

8 States Join New Lawsuit

8 states so far have joined forces with the DOJ on the suit. They include:

  • Virginia
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • New Jersey
  • New york city
  • Rhode Island
  • Tennessee

Remember that this lawsuit is different from the first lawsuit from the DOJ back in 2020 versus Google.

In the 153-page document, the DOJ argues that Google has developed a marketing environment that prefers its Alphabet-owned products unfairly.

Going into additional detail, the DOJ states:

Google, a single business with pervasive conflicts of interest, now controls:-LRB- 1) the innovation used by nearly every significant website publisher to offer marketing space for sale; (2) the leading tools utilized by advertisers to buy that marketing area; and (3) the largest advertisement exchange that matches publishers with marketers each time that advertisement space is offered.

Speaking to the monopoly accusation, the complaint more states:

Google abuses its monopoly power to downside website publishers and advertisers who attempt to use contending advertisement tech products in a search for greater quality, or lower expense, matches. Google uses its rule over digital marketing innovation to funnel more transactions to its own ad tech products where it extracts inflated fees to line its own pockets at the expenditure of the marketers and publishers it supposedly serves.

Google Openly Responds To Allegations

After the news broke, Google launched its official statement on the matter.

Their primary counterpoints to the claim concentrate on the following:

  • Federal government’s control within a competitive industry
  • Rewording history and reversing innovation

Dan Taylor, Vice President, Global Ads of Google, mentioned:

We are among numerous companies that enable the positioning of ads across the Internet. And it’s been well reported that competitors is increasing as a growing number of business enter and purchase constructing their marketing organizations.

He supplied examples of the increased competitors over the past couple of years, such as Apple and Amazon’s increased investment in their marketing platforms and other media companies like Comcast and Disney.

Where Does This Leave The Marketing Market?

If Google is found guilty in this lawsuit, that would likely indicate the turnaround of 15-year acquisitions such as AdMeld and DoubleClick.

If those are closed down, it’s hard to state how much it would directly impact advertising technologies within the Google Ads platform, among others that marketers utilize.

Google also states that a judgment against Google would damage the broader marketing sector, “making it harder for Google to provide effective marketing tools that benefit publishers, marketers and the larger U.S. economy.”

Summary

The claim filing versus Google is still in its early stages. It’s not likely that any drastic changes will happen in the immediate future.

We’ll continue to update as more information is provided.

You can check out the complete suit document here.

Included Image: Sergei Elagin/SMM Panel