Justice Dept. sues Google over digital advertising dominance

FILE – A sign is shown on a Google building at their campus in Mountain View, Calif., on Sept. 24, 2019. The Justice Department and several states sued Google on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023, alleging that its dominance in digital advertising harms competition. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department and eight states have sued Google, alleging that its dominance in digital advertising harms competition as well as consumers and advertisers. The government alleges that Google’s plan to assert dominance has been to “neutralize or eliminate” rivals through acquisitions and to force advertisers to use its products by making it difficult to use competitors’ products. Attorney General Merrick Garland said Google’s dominance in the ad market means fewer publishers are able to offer their products without charging subscription or other fees. Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent company, says the suit “doubles down on a flawed argument that would slow innovation, raise advertising fees, and make it harder for thousands of small businesses and publishers to grow.”