Reports suggest how the United States Department of Justice is ready to sue Alphabet Inc’s Google, presumably in September itself. Sources aware of the situation specified this, adding this was after the department had been limiting years worth of work to come up with a case that the company is guilty of possessing illegal dominance over the digital ad market.
The attorneys representing the antitrust team of the department are enquiring publishers in an additional set of interviews to confirm the suspicious, and gain more details on the case. Reportedly, a number of these interviews are already being conducted and, some are set to take place in the next few weeks. The sources specified how they built it on interrogations which took place earlier in the investigations.
Last year, certain reports mentioned the emergence of an ad tech complaint which would signify the second case from the department against the search giant. Prior to this, a lawsuit came which accused Google of dominating the online search sector while violating antitrust laws. However, it is still not determined as to where the prosecutors would file the case- New York or Washington.
The statement from the Alphabet unit:
A spokesperson from Google, Peter Schottenfels gave a statement regarding the matter. He stated how the company’s ad tech has contributed to aiding sites and applications fund their material, and allow various small business to extend to consumers worldwide. Further, he stated how the massive rave in online ad tech has made these advertisements gain more relevance, lower the costs, and a provide wider range of opportunities for advertisers and publishers.
Previously, the Federal Trade Commission went on to sue Facebook parent Meta hoping to push it into selling WhatsApp and Instagram, along with an investigation on Amazon in relation to its online retail dominance. On the other hand, the Justice Department is investigating Apple owing to its strong hold on the App Store.
The probe on the search giant’s ad tech business dates to the time when Trump was in power when William Barr, the then Attorney-general sued Mountain View regarding its search business. It accused it of using exclusive distribution agreements with phone manufacturers and wireless carriers to limit competition.
Towards the end of 2020, Google was sued by attorneys general of Poerto Rico and 16 states alleged that Google monopolised the ad tech business by signing an illegal agreement with Meta. Allegedly, it tried to control online auctions where exchange of ad space. The search giant denied these accusations, asking a federal judge for the dismissal of these cases.