A considered guest post on TC has kicked up a conversation around whether Google is a monopolist, and whether the DOJ will take action. This of course is one thing that must keep top folks at Google awake at night – it’s OK to be a monopoly, it’s not OK to leverage that monopoly to the detriment of the ecosystem you control.
There is clearly and argument to be made that Google already has a monopoly, the author makes that case and concludes:
I believe the Department of Justice will be able to establish monopoly power and the abuse of that power.
As covered earlier, at least one established prior monopolist has strong opinions on this issue – Microsoft.
4 thoughts on “Google, The Anti-Trust Case”
“It does not require showing that consumers are harmed directly by lower quality organic search, if indeed lower quality organic search exists.”
LOL — there’s one way to read this remark that’s got me ROFLMFAO!
Basically: it is impossible for organic search to get any worse than it already is.
I think that organic search could get a lot worse. And for a certain, very narrow type of question / information need, it does ok. But I get your point, nmw. It could get much better, but it doesn’t.
Careful legal, economic, political and, of course philosophical analysis leads me to this inevitable conclusion regarding the case against Google:
If they fund my startup they’re cool…
If they don’t they’re obviously a dangerous monopoly!
Seriously though, the question is a difficult and complex one and more broadly addresses the issue of defining the status and responsibilities of “mega” organizations which in an evolutionary sense take on the characteristics of landscapes as we move into a truly global Technium
These issues are my focus… not the legal questions but the more fundamental scaling issues in the decision process within organizations (government, corporate, social, cultural) as they relate to the broader civilization
Here’s an element which caused a lot of problems in banking:
Self-Interest vs Altruism – Problems in Scaling the Decision Process
I wonder which part of Google is the monopoly? I do use Google for lots of stuff – but I came to it from AltaVista – which still sort of exists. And there are lots more specialized searches out there. I’d be more inclined to put Amazon as a monopoly in some ways, myself.