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Blog Post
9/9/2011
By John M. Simpson
More examples of Google's powerful grip on the Internet surfaced this week and its acquisition of the venerable restaurant reviewer, Zagat, raised new concern about how the Internet giant will use its monopoly power in the future. Being a monopoly is not in itself illegal. If you developed the position naturally without breaking any laws,...
Blog Post
8/15/2011
By Jamie Court
What if Google, the master of the cloud computing universe and the Internet's information monopolist, were to buy Intel, Apple, or IBM? Would we want the company that controls information outside of our computers all along the Internet to also have control over a principal computer hardware maker and its patents? Anti-trust regulators...
News Release
7/21/2011
CONTACT John M. Simpson
SANTA MONICA, CA -- Google and Facebook pumped record amounts into their lobbying efforts during the second quarter, according to just filed disclosure reports. Google's spending soared to $2.06 million, a 54 percent increase from the same period a year ago. Facebook spent $320,000 -- nearly as much as its total lobbying expenses for all of...
Blog Post
7/18/2011
By John M. Simpson
Lobbying expenditure reports are due to be filed with the the Senate Office of Public Records Wednesday and you can expect record expenditures from both Facebook and Google. Driven by an antitrust probe, Google could even outspend Microsoft in it's arm-twisting campaign. Our friends at the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets....
News Release
7/6/2011
CONTACT John M. Simpson, Jamie Court & Carmen Balber
SANTA MONICA, CA – Facebook has revised terms for game developers using its “virtual money,” Facebook Credits, changing one blatant anticompetitive provision in the wake of an antitrust complaint from Consumer Watchdog, but Federal Trade Commission Intervention is still necessary, the nonpartisan, nonprofit group said today....
Blog Post
6/29/2011
By Jamie Court
If Facebook's new facial recognition software isn't scary enough, imagine Mark Zuckerberg's face replacing George Washington's on the dollar bill. Or rubbing out all the dead presidents on every bit of American currency. July 4th may be Independence Day for America, but on July 1st Facebook is making a declaration about...
News Release
6/29/2011
CONTACT John M. Simpson, Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
WASHINGTON, DC -- Consumer Watchdog has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission charging that a virtual currency system called “Facebook Credits” used to play games on Facebook’s social network violates antitrust law.   The virtual goods market is expected to produce revenue of $2.1 billion in 2011, up from $...
Video
6/27/2011
Google has admitted it is being investigated by the FTC for gaming its search results to favor Google assets over competitors'. But while the investigation ensues, Google execs continue to enjoy access inside the President's inner circle. Consumer Watchdog has now called for this to change while such criminal investigations are ongoing.
News Release
6/24/2011
CONTACT John M. Simpson & Carmen Balber
WASHINGTON, DC -- Consumer Watchdog has asked the White House Counsel to rule that President Obama and other members of the Administration must distance themselves from Google while the company is the target of serious federal investigations, including a criminal probe into allegations the search giant profited from selling online ads to illegal...
Blog Post
6/23/2011
By John M. Simpson
Since April when Bloomberg News reported that the Federal Trade Commission was contemplating a full-blown antitrust investigation of Google, people who follow the Internet giant have been waiting for the other shoe to drop. It did on Thursday with the report in the Wall Street Journal that the five-member Commission is about to serve Google...