Re: FTC: Google Received No Favors During Investigation
Thanks for the coverage on this, Nathan. No doubt tons of investigations like this from the FTC and other bodies are opening and closing on a daily basis, and if you don't have your ear pressed to the floor, it can be easy to miss the ones that might be of interest. Moreover, if you're not a lawyer, it can be hard to make sense of all of it. Taking this in aggregate I'm inclined to agree that Google is in the clear here. anti-competitive laws are notoriously hard to break, short of litterally running your competition out of town. This sounds more like a routine investigation into a company as huge as Google just to ensure everything is up to snuff, which is warranted. It sounded like they complied to all requests from the FTC, and turned over everything asked of them.
I'm also inclined to agree with calling out the WSJ on their narrative - it seems normal that a company as big as Google would routinely have a handful of meetings with Washington officials daily, let alone when they're being investigated, and it seems like an odd subject to single out for the all-too-rampant influence of lobbies in US politics. Looking at the more ominous sounding nature of the EU investigations, though, does highlight some of the differences between competition laws (which I'm no expert on) and public sentiment towards big companies in the US vs the EU. EU regulators are notably more strict on privacy laws and often require companies to hold on to information for shorter amounts of time or terminate consumer information upon consumers' request. It's not hard to see how this would translate to general distrust of Google. I wonder how this will all pan out globally.