October 22, 2020

"By many measures, Google is a great organization... But why then does it need to pay Apple billions of dollars to keep competitors at bay?"

"The law is demanding that Google prove its greatness by playing the game, not by buying its way out of it. Being exposed to more competition might also serve as a stimulant for the company: Insulation from competition can be a narcotic.... [Some] may urge us to trust that large companies like Google are fundamentally well-intentioned. That view became dominant among antitrust officials during George W. Bush’s administration and has now prevailed for 20 years. It has left us with an economy that is too concentrated — unfair to workers, smaller producers and entrepreneurs. It has deepened economic inequality. It has also put so much political power in so few private hands that it alarms politicians on both the left and the right."


Kevin said...

You know what you never hear anymore?

That Republicans are the party of the rich.

Big Mike said...

He’s right.

Wince said...

Like I said, simply rescinding these exclusive deals that brought Google to market dominance, yet not addressing directly the market concentration that it now has, is unlikely to curtail Google's hegemony.

Years of litigation in pursuit of the former but not the latter is likely to make lawyers rich but not much else.

Jupiter said...

That was in the Times? Heads will roll!

Nonapod said...

Well that's certainly an odd take on the sitution, Google has to prove it's "greatness"?

Google is an almost unavoidable part of using the internet. Even if you don't used Search, you're still being tracked and advertised to by Google through cookies since many of the most trafficed websites use Google. And in normal web surfing in many cases you're probably regularly accessing stuff being run on Google's cloud infrastructure (althought they don't have anywhere near the penetration of Amazon's AWS). If you're using any kind of smartphone it's a virtual certainty that you're using Google for any searches. Basically in many area's Google has near monopolies.

But beyond just Google, for me the larger issue is the amount of power that is concentrated among a small tech oligopoly in the form of information control. There's a small number of companies (Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter) that collectively basically control 99% of the information flow on the internet. As we've seen, the potential for abuse is fairly significant. No small group of people should wield that much power.

iowan2 said...

Republicans would do themselves a favor to get a piece of legislation about reforming SCOTUS by adding justices on the floor. That legislation would not start until 12 years after the President signs it into law. Just think that if the law would have been signed in 2010, in two years it would be in play. 12 years is a very short time period.
Lets see if Democrats actually believe(they don't) that reform is needed.

A simple fact for Democrats. They have no power to enact their agenda through legislation. Democrat most heralded successes come through the enelected oracles in black robs, that are unbound by constitutional restraints.
The simple reason. Democrat policies are not supported by an informed electorate.

Will said...

Google is not a great company. They are trading on a decade old reputation of being great, from back when they were growing.

Modern Google is an advertising company with a small, elite, and focused work force, and also thousands of self satisfied lollygaggers that have little responsibility, little accountability, and almost no output. The culture of a normal Google campus is like a resort for nerds. Tons of money, smart people, and they're all bored.

Seen first hand, many times.

donald said...

You know what you never hear anymore?

That Republicans are the party of the rich.

10/22/20, 12:45 PM

You must not ever listen to Democrat politicians or the main. Stream media.

YoungHegelian said...

Has Google been able to move into anything but its primary business -- search engine driven advertising? It's tried many markets, but never seems to crack them. Google's most successful business is probably Google Office, but Microsoft's Office 365 seems to be gaining market share on it. Android they essentially give away.

Google would probably be better served to just stick with the knitting (i.e. advertising revenue) and spin off the rest and let the smaller companies sink or swim. They've now got a big staff of restless, mouthy, & not productive employees, and that's a real long term liability. I mean, that mouthy staff have now got them in the sights of the Federal government for anti-trust. Does anyone here believe that had that mouthy staff not spent years kicking conservatives in the nuts that the Feds would be going after them?

Kai Akker said...

The long Google bull market has started its hiatus.

n.n said...

The Alphabet umbrella of trust.

Kay said...

Since we’re not bringing our troops home from the Middle East, this could be a good legacy for the Donald to leave behind.

Kay said...

Since we’re not bringing our troops home from the Middle East, this could be a good legacy for the Donald to leave behind.

Leland said...

I have no love for Google. I know the EU courts have been big on antitrust litigation of Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Samsung. I can't say the results from EU rulings have made things better. For instance, I really hate having to acknowledge I accept "cookies" every time I visit a new website. And just about the time they got Microsoft to remove Internet Explorer as a default web browser install; Google came out with Chromebooks with default Chrome browser. Now Microsoft default installs Edge. So, I'm not expecting improvement just because it is the politicized DOJ looking into these organizations now. I suspect it is just a shakedown on the path to defacto socialism (otherwise known as fascism as practiced by Italy decades ago).

bagoh20 said...

"[Some] may urge us to trust that large companies like Google are fundamentally well-intentioned."

The only fundamental problem with capitalism is monopoly. The psychology of business requires constant improvement which almost always translates into growth of market share, so the ultimate goal of business is really monopoly, and most of the energy of the resources is focused in that direction. Unfortunately monopoly is not good for the society as a whole or even the soul of the business. It eventually lowers quality, innovation and customer satisfaction. This is one of the few places where I think I part ways with libertarians just out of practical necessity. You need to break monopolies up at some point and let the animal spirits reorganize smaller more dynamic companies. You could let things just get intolerable until people revolt and destroy the company by force, but that would be very messy and unnecessary.

tim in vermont said...

The Google search engine is superior, but I only use it when in extremis. It also “fails” to find certain stories that reflect badly on Biden and probably a lot of other subjects too, one can assume.

boatbuilder said...

“Are you crazy? Are you high?
Or just an ordinary guy?
Have they fin’ly got to you?
Can you hear me Dr. Wu?
Are you with me Dr. Wu?”

Just kidding. Didn’t read it all but the guy has a rather obvious point-the pendulum has swung back, and oligopolies are not good.
Two points, actually.

Fernandinande said...

A bogus lawsuit since google doesn't have a monopoly on anything; its crime is similar to that of Standard Oil's, namely low prices and new products. Yes, they're sleazy, but that's a different issue.

Google's monopoly is like white supremacy: blamed for being successful.

Curious George said...

"YoungHegelian said...
Has Google been able to move into anything but its primary business"

Are you kidding?

Youtube 73% marketshare
Maps/Navigation 70% marketshare
Android/Cellphones 75% market worldwide
Smart Speakers 40% Marketshare

And they are the fastest growing cloud computing company.