back to article Google faces antitrust investigation in Texas

Google is facing an antitrust investigation in Texas over claims the company unfairly manipulated results on its search engine. The news was first reported on Friday by Search Engine Land, which said it received a tip that the investigation was underway. Search Engine Land said that Google confirmed the investigation, and five …

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WTF?

Stupid is as stupid does.....

Gawd, sometimes it's just plain embarrassing to be a Texan. Google is a private company with plenty of competitors. They can return whatever results they want from a search. Obviously the Texas AG has never used Dogpile. ROTFLMAO......

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Actually

Google are a PUBLIC company (meaning they are listed on the stock exchange, private are not) and neither a public, nor private company is permitted to use Market dominance in one area to unfairly compete in another.

That said, I'm with the goog. It's complainers typically have bad sites. Buck up your game instead of trying to game the system.

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I don't quite understand this

I don't see the big deal here, these site are just spammy link farm, it's nothing I would miss in my search results.

Also shouldn't this raise freedom of speech questions? I don't think it's okay for anyone to dictate what goes on my freely accessed website, even if my name is Google.

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Exactly the reason why Microsoft lost

Google use their search engine dominance to push other Google services, which are in different markets, squeezing out competitors. Classic antitrust. Why have a five-year investigation? Spend a week doing it and slap the injunction already: save the taxpayer years and millions.

OK, I can see why you can't do it in a week, but these cases shouldn't take years. Come on...

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Erm....

Except that you can choose your browser, you can choose your search engine, you don't have to use Android. You don't have to use any Google products at all.

Go to a computer retailer and try to buy a computer (non-Mac) that doesn't have Windows on it. You won't be able to do so! This is why Microsoft is the monopoly and Google isn't.

Google are dominant in search, but there are plenty of alternatives and switching to an alternative is as simple as changing your homepage.

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You just proved the point

You claim Google are dominant in search, that's exactly what gives them the ability to push their *other* services into dominant positions. This is exactly what Microsoft did with Windows and Internet Explorer and exactly why they *lost* that case. If it goes to court, the odds seem pretty high that Google will be convicted of monopolistic behaviours, just as Microsoft was. Of course, that assumes that the numbers which have been quoted before are accurate.

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Is it just me, or ..

.. does every first response from Google stink? If they would just stay with the facts it would be OK, but it always has to be tied to someone else having it in for them, as if that matters. It odes not change the facts.

Who manages their PR? A 10 year old?

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We're not just corrupt when it comes to the oil industry.

Anybody who's ever lived in the same state as Governor Goodhair - and, thusly, lived under der Guteshaar's reich - knows that he and his government don't care one lick (throwing that out there to prove that I'm a Texan and not some self-hating liberal douche hipster from Vermont that moved to Austin that overpays for SXSW every year because he was too young to go when it was good) about the state's/nation's people, they only care about how much money they can make/scrape/steal from them and just how much money corporations will pay/sink/donate to stay out of trouble.

Rick Perry and Greg Abbot would throw their own grandmothers under the bus, sell their own children's organs on the black market and put their wives into sexual slavery if they thought they could make a buck from any of it. There is nothing more to this than looking for payday for the state of Texas and, moreover, its government.

This is a bit of an aside but it most definitely ties in, so please bear with me: Every time patent lawsuits are filed in the East Texas courts and someone inevitably asks the question of why nothing is done about this court and there is no reform happening or blah blah blah, I have to physically restrain myself from stating, restating and beating the fucking obvious dead horse into the ground with a bloody rock that we make too much damned money off it.

The Silicon Prairie is an institution in Texas, akin to the King Ranch or Fina Oil. They know how to play ball, they know when to bend over and they know whose pockets to line and elbows to grease. The GDP for 2008 was $1.24 trillion dollars - of that the various tech industries (services, manufacturing, research, etc.) account for more than a fifth of the entire economy. I believe that's a higher percentage than Silicon Valley's is California, but obviously it doesn't make more than Silicon Valley does.

Now tell me, what do you REALLY think is going on here? (hint: corruption, corruption, corruption)

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Anonymous Coward

True!

I also live in Tx. The state government is a corrupt good 'ol boys club. This is the state that put Dubya at the front of the line for Texas Air National Guard, so he wouldn't have to go to Viet Nam.

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I don't see a problem with their search results.

I do feel that anti-trust measures would be appropriate when a companies dominance in one area starts to hinder competition in others. However when I am not sure there is any real abuse going on.

I can search Google for "web mail", "product search", "search engine", "photo manager" ... etc and Google gladly serves up search results for its biggest competitors. If they are not tampering with the search results for their biggest competitors, I doubt they'd bother to rig the system to hurt smaller companies that pose no real threat.

Even if Google chose to make its products/services search result #1 I don't think it would do any real damage to interfere with competition. Actually I think to avoid the appearance of impropriety in its ad auctions, it should just reserve a spot for Google products/and services. That way their internal bids won't influence the prices.

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Anonymous Coward

are you sure?

Type a postcode into google, what results do you get?

number 1 will be a googlemap of the area, probably followed by genuine search results relating to that postcode. You are unlikely to get a map displayed from another map provider.

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Shill bidding anyone?

What is your view on shill bidding?

Think that is fair to artificially raise the price of top placed links when your own company bids in the process in secret?

Yeah, that in itself is anti-competitive and fraud if you ask me. No wonder Google is getting rich

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Black Helicopters

One time, on the campaign trail...

There seems to be a possible correlation between campaign time and frivolous lawsuit prosecutions. I could be wrong, though.

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Dig a little deepper - guess who's sponsoring this suit...

Kinda reminds me of the SCO fiasco - part II.

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

FAIL

Google is not a Search Company

People still seem to think Google's product is Search?!?!?! (and so no monopoly because you can choose another search engine?)

Google's product is NOT search. The product that Google actually sells is advertising. And in that market, they are a near monopoly provider.

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Guess who is behind these anti-trust complaints

Groklaw has some interesting and comprehensive analysis here;

http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20100904101642564

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One of ...

...PJ's best articles IMHO.

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