Ahead of FTC Antitrust Ruling on Google, Fairsearch.org Whines
I have never been a fan of Fairsearch.org.
The free market is a tough place especially in the Internet search space since it is a relatively new industry and the best player out of the gate has become dominant. That player is obviously Google.
Fairsearch.org (which is really a very thinly veiled Microsoft ploy to attack Google) is trying to get out in front of a supposed result in the FTC investigation of Google that has been ongoing for about 20 months.
Bloomberg is reporting
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission is poised to announce that Google has agreed to voluntarily change some business practices and settle allegations it misused patents to thwart competitors in smartphone technology, said the people, who asked not to be named because the decision isn’t public.
Fairsearch.org posted on their blog yesterday
As the FTC returns to business in the New Year, it’s important to remember that reports indicate that the European Commission is expecting a detailed, formal offer from Google this month to resolve its investigation of Google’s anti-competitive search practices.
The FTC has every reason to consider Google’s proposal to the EC before deciding how to resolve the FTC’s own investigation to ensure that US consumers and innovators get at least the benefit of the remedies that are implemented in Europe.
A key question for the FTC is whether it has all the relevant information in hand when it makes its enforcement decision.
FairSearch remains convinced that US consumers and innovators deserve the same protections that the European Commission may adopt in Europe. Consumers will fail to reap the benefits of a truly competitive online marketplace if Google is allowed to pick and choose where it biases its search results.
If the FTC fails to take decisive action to end Google’s anti-competitive practices, and locks itself out of any remedies to Google’s conduct that are offered in Europe later this month, the FTC will have acted prematurely and failed in its mission of protecting America’s consumers.
In essence, the claim is that the US should wait and see what the European Commission does before it renders its decision.
My question is why? The last thing a struggling free market system (that would be the US as it faces increasing government intervention on many levels) needs is to follow a failing market like that the European Commission oversees. It’s that simple.
Google is good at search. They are dominant. They are not monopolistic, however, because the consumer is NOT being hurt by Google AND there is choice for consumers in Bing, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo and to a lesser degree Apple, Facebook, Twitter and many other smaller players.
Go away Fair Search. Stop crying to anyone who will listen and get busy competing against your real competition which is your attitude about competition. If we start legislating innovation then we all lose. Buck up and move on. We’ve heard enough.