Google responds to Justice Department lawsuit, calls ‘deeply flawed’

Kent Walker, Google’s SVP of Global Affairs, said in a blog post:
“Google Search has put the world’s information at the fingertips of over a billion people. Our engineers work to offer the best search engine possible, constantly improving and fine-tuning it. We think that’s why a wide cross-section of Americans value and often love our free products. Today’s lawsuit by the Department of Justice is deeply flawed.
People use Google because they choose to, not because they’re forced to, or because they can’t find alternatives. This lawsuit would do nothing to help consumers. To the contrary, it would artificially prop up lower-quality search alternatives, raise phone prices, and make it harder for people to get the search services they want to use. Let’s talk specifics.
The Department’s complaint relies on dubious antitrust arguments to criticize our efforts to make Google Search easily available to people. Yes, like countless other businesses, we pay to promote our services, just like a cereal brand might pay a supermarket to stock its products at the end of a row or on a shelf at eye level.
For digital services, when you first buy a device, it has a kind of home screen “eye level shelf.” On mobile, that shelf is controlled by Apple, as well as companies like AT&T, Verizon, Samsung and LG. On desktop computers, that shelf space is overwhelmingly controlled by Microsoft. So, we negotiate agreements with many of those companies for eye-level shelf space. But let’s be clear-our competitors are readily available too, if you want to use them.”

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