Like their colleagues at the Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission has spectacularly ignored Google’s violations of law demonstrating Google’s whole-of-government capture.
Of the three EU antitrust cases against Google (search bias in shopping, Android tying, and soon search-advertising-tying), the expected new search-advertising case — which focuses on how Google has long contractually required websites to use Google’s search advertising if they use Google search — could be the hardest EU-Google antitrust case for the FTC to ignore, for the reasons below.
Summary of Why It’s Hard for FTC to Ignore the EU Search-Advertising Antitrust Case:
1. The FTC has been following the EU’s antitrust lead.
2. The FTC’s Google 2012 staff report agrees with the EU’s conclusion on search advertising.
3. The DOJ threatened a 2008 monopolization case over Google’s search advertising syndication.
4. The FTC approved two Google advertising acquisitions that substantially lessened competition.
5. The FTC fined Google a record amount in 2012 for a serious deceptive advertising offense.
6. This EU advertising case is based on strong contractual evidence.