South Dakota joining nationwide investigation of Google

Joanna Estrada
September 11, 2019

Google accounts for about 38% of digital advertising spending in the United States - at around $48bn - followed by Facebook at about 22%, according to eMarketer. "You have to act like an adult and you have to understand there are consequences that adults face when they don't do things the right way".

State attorneys general spanning across dozens of states will announce an antitrust investigation into Google and Facebook, and other technology companies at the U.S. Supreme Court at 2:00 p.m. ET Monday.

Moody told reporters that the investigation will start with Google's dominance in online advertising but could lead to how the tech giant handles users' data.

Google's parent company, Alphabet, has a market value of more than $820 billion and controls so many facets of the internet that it's nearly impossible to surf the web for long without running into at least one of its services.

This comes after New York Attorneys General Letitia James announced an anti-trust violation into Facebook last week. The lead AGs are Ken Paxton, a Republican from Texas, and Karl Racine, a Democrat from the District of Columbia.

"I was proud to launch the first antitrust and privacy investigation of Big Tech by an attorney general two years ago". Washington is home to two of America's largest tech companies, Amazon and Microsoft.

President Donald Trump slammed Google and Facebook for "discriminating against conservatives" during a July White House summit on social media. DOJ may be investigating other tech companies as well. "We are watching Google very closely!"

The Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission also are looking into the business practices of Google and other major platforms. According to him, the investigation was necessary because Google "dominates all aspects of advertising on the Internet and searching on the Internet".

"The ability to access and gather information is essential in our world, and the internet provides us the tools to gather that information", said Ravnsborg. "And this investigation will initially focus on the capture of that information and whether Google embedded itself in every level of the online market ad sales to monopolize this industry".

Doug Peterson, the attorney general for Nebraska, described the historic probe as "a big deal" adding that, "when 50 Attorney Generals come together they send a strong message to Google".

"Certainly there are questions that need to be raised", said Schmitt, a Republican. Along with D.C., Puerto Rico also joined the investigation.

Asked why California has not joined the states pursuing the investigation, a spokesperson for California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said the state is committed to fighting anti-competitive behavior. "We have always worked constructively with regulators and will continue to do so".

On Monday, Reyes and Racine joined forces again - this time flanked by almost a dozen mostly Republican state attorneys general on the steps of the Supreme Court and dozens more from both parties who signed onto the formal investigation.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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