50 attorneys general targeting Google in antitrust investigation

National

WASHINGTON, D.C. (NEXSTAR) — A massive investigation is now underway, and its target is Google.

On Monday, 50 attorneys general announced their effort to figure out whether Google has violated antitrust laws.

The tech giant is under fire for allegedly putting its own business above consumers’ rights.

“The internet is the superhighway of information and what we have found is that Google, the giant company Google, is the one that is directing most, if not all, of the traffic, on this highway,” said Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill.

The attorneys general from all but two states, Democrats and Republicans, launched the investigation.

“An investigation to determine whether Google’s business practices are unlawful and anti-competitive,” said Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt.

The concern is that Google controls too much of the online advertising market.

The attorneys general said Google crushes its competitors and pushes consumers to results that benefit Google more than it benefits its users.

“We want to make sure that the internet has competition, and more importantly, we want to make sure we’re preserving innovation,” Hill said.

But while 50 attorneys general are leading the effort, not everyone is on board, and that includes some who advocate on behalf of the tech industry itself.

“This is going to be a witch hunt that ends up wasting taxpayer dollars,” said Carl Szabo, of NetChoice.

Szabo said other websites like Amazon and Yelp are proof that consumers have options to find what they need online.

“It’s hard to see how you have direct competitors being monopolies in a market,” he said.

The investigation is now still preliminary, and a final result will likely take a while.

“Success looks like when what is offered to our consumers and our citizens is a fair marketplace,” said Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody.

The attorneys general said they have already served Google with subpoenas to start the investigation.

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