U.S. Justice Department poised to sue Google over digital ad market dominance

The U.S. Justice Department could sue Alphabet Inc.’s Google this week over the dominance of its digital advertising market

January 24, 2023 11:36 am | Updated 11:36 am IST

File photo of the Google logo

File photo of the Google logo | Photo Credit: AP

The U.S. Justice Department is poised to sue Alphabet Inc.'s Google as soon as Tuesday, regarding its dominance over the digital advertising market, Bloomberg News reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

(For insights on emerging themes at the intersection of technology, business, and policy, subscribe to our tech newsletter Today’s Cache.)

The lawsuit would be the second federal antitrust complaint filed against Google, alleging violations of antitrust law in how the tech giant acquires or maintains its dominance. The Justice Department lawsuit filed against Google in 2020 focuses on its monopoly in search and is scheduled to go to trial in September.

The Justice Department did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment, while Google declined to comment on the report.

The lawsuit is expected to take aim at Google's advertising business, which is responsible for some 80% of its revenue. In addition to its well-known search, which is free, Google makes revenue through its interlocking ad tech businesses, which connect advertisers with newspapers, websites and other firms looking to host them.

Advertisers and website publishers have complained that Google has not been transparent about where ad dollars go, specifically how much goes to publishers and how much to Google.

The tech giant made a series of purchases, including DoubleClick in 2008 and AdMob in 2009, to help make it a dominant player in online advertising.

Google had previously argued that the ad tech ecosystem was competitive with Facebook Inc., AT&T, Comcast and others.

While Google remains the market leader by a long shot, its share of the U.S. digital ad revenue has been eroding, falling from 36.7% in 2016 to 28.8% last year, according to Insider Intelligence.

Top News Today

Comments

Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.