You are here

FTC

Who but Google is Thriving in Online Advertising?

Evidence abounds that the industry business model of online advertising, minus Google, is shockingly weak competitively, given how many people assume advertising is supposed to be the viable competitive monetization engine that will sustain the "free and open Internet" long term.

Anyone open to connecting-the-dots of recent public evidence will see an obvious dichotomy: Google is thriving, while much of the rest of the online advertising industry is struggling despite unprecedented: opportunity to reach users, technological efficiencies, and access to troves of private data to target ads to produce more revenue growth.

Examine the accumulating troubling evidence of how weak online advertising competition has become.

The Internet Advertising Bureau's latest reporting of 15% online advertising growth for the industry in 1Q12 masks the large Google vs. competitor revenue growth dichotomy. Given that Google grew 24% 1Q12 and comprises almost half of all U.S. online advertising per eMarketer, I calculate that the rest of the online advertising industry is growing only about 8%. That means Google is growing three times faster than its online competitors and continues to take market share at an accelerating rate.

Google's Culture of Unaccountability: In their Own Words -- (Google Unaccountability Series: Part II)

We learn about Google's culture-of-unaccountability from Google itself. Google's leaders have repeatedly indicated their hostility to accountability of most any type.

Listen to Google's own words to learn about their unique and unabashed corporate culture-of-unaccountability.

"New investors will fully share in Google's long-term economic future but will have little ability to influence its strategic decisions through their voting rights." Google's 2004 IPO letter to prospective shareholders from co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

Questions to ask the EU and Google about the EU Antitrust Settlement

Below are questions for both the EU and Google, given the expected announcement soon of a proposed settlement of Google's alleged antitrust violations.

Questions for the EU:
Remedies Implications
: Since the EU's formal demand for Google to propose acceptable remedies for the abuses and harms that Google has caused would only be appropriate and legal if Google was indeed a monopoly, and in fact abused its monopoly, does the EU effectively consider Google a monopoly which has abused its market power?

Non-compliance penalty? Does the EU reserve the right to issue a formal Statement of Objections in the future if Google proves seriously non-compliant with the proposed monopoly abuse enforcement settlement?

Complainant review? What assurances will complainants have to ensure that Google's concessions are meaningful and real, and will not be easily gamed by Google because of the dearth of technical expertise on the EU enforcement staff?

Effect on other EU-Google Antitrust investigations? Will this monopoly abuse enforcement settlement have any effect on the conduct or outcome of the EU's investigation into Google's alleged anti-competitive behavior with Android and/or Google-Motorola's alleged abuse of standards essential patents?

Questions to Ask at Google-Fiber Announcement

Listed below are pertinent questions to ask Google at its Google Fiber announcement July 26th, given Google's "launch-first, fix-later" philosophy, and its PR practice of omitting material facts and information. (See the Google-Kansas City Agreement here.)

Google Mocks the World

Google has no shame. This week Google sponsored a two-day summit in Los Angeles entitled: "Illicit Networks: Forces in Opposition" and trumpeted Google's leadership in combating illicit networks, with no acknowledgement of Google's own uniquely atrocious track record of illicit network activity, and even worse, with no public acceptance of responsibility or remorse for Google's illicit behavior.

There is no question that Google's professed public goals of combating "narco-trafficking, human trafficking, organ harvesting and arms dealing" are noble, needed and welcome. However, the serious problem here is Google's extreme cynicism and deceptive PR that they can burnish their global brand without having to practice what they preach.

Let's have the evidence speak for itself, because it proves that Google is its own worst enemy, in not doing what they say.

Why FTC's $22.5m Google Privacy-Fine is Faux Accountability

If one fact-checks and puts in perspective the FTC's expected $22.5m privacy fine of Google -- for bypassing millions of Apple Safari users' privacy and security settings to add a tracking cookie to track users browsing activity -- it looks like faux FTC accountability of Google. Close scrutiny of the FTC's oversight record of Google's exceptionally bad consumer record and very long privacy rap sheet suggests that Google could have little to fear from the FTC on pending privacy or antitrust enforcement going forward, despite PR and optics to the contrary. Unfortunately, the evidence to date indicates the FTC's enforcement oversight of Google has had minimal accountability or deterrent effect on Google's behavior.

To be fair to the FTC, the FTC does not have all the legal authority it needs to fully address the Google privacy enforcement problem, but that being acknowledged, many poor FTC decisions have further self-limited the FTC's ability to confront the exceptional Google enforcement problem.

I. Google appears to enjoy faux FTC Accountability.

EU-Google Antitrust Primer -- Top Ten Questions & Answers

In preparation for the EU antitrust authorities likely Statement of Objections against Google, Precursor has assembled a primer that answers the top-ten most likely and important questions many will have about the EU's action. Please see the primer here.

Top 10 EU-Google Antitrust Questions & Answers

 

Google's Labeling Antitrust Remedy: "One Trick Away" -- A Satire

 

Attorney-Client Privileged Communication

Confidential Memorandum For: Larry Page, Google CEO

From: Google's Mensa Legal & PR Brain Trust

Subject: Recommendation to settle EU/FTC antitrust complaints with a labeling remedy

You tasked us to be more innovative in solving our antitrust problem. We have succeeded. We are now one trick away from absolving Google from all of its antitrust liability.

Our plan is to deploy Google responsibility-evasion algorithm #784923, code-named "Lipstick on a rhino," which our calculations indicate has an 91.265918735% chance of success, given expected temperatures in Brussels, the wing speed of a butterfly in Sumatra, news that Google plans to rank highest, and most importantly the data we have collected and analyzed on the antitrust decision-makers' proclivities and intentions via Google's knowledge of their: search history, website-visits, scanned-emails, wiretapped-routers, hard drive files, DNA sequences, and Google X's artificial intelligence intention-discernment-algorithms.

Many of Google's brightest engineers have read and wholeheartedly support our antitrust-liability-evasion design document, but per company practice none will ever admit to having read it. In addition, a scientific poll of Google's 16,337 PR spokespeople resulted in 102% of them voting yes that they could sell our proposed responsibility-evasion plan to the public.

Pages

Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths