What Should You Do When The FTC Calls About Google

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On June 24, 2011, Google confirmed that the Federal Trade Commission opened a formal antitrust investigation against it. While the scope of the investigation has yet to be announced publicly, the FTC is likely investigating to determine whether Google has used its dominance in Internet search and advertising to stifle competition, and whether Google’s actions cause harm to consumers.

What is the FTC going to do now and why does this matter?

As part of its investigation, it is not only highly likely the FTC will contact advertisers, advertising agencies, and media buying companies, as well as ad publishing networks, lead generating companies, suppliers and users of Google’s services, but that appears to have already begun. The purpose of these third party investigations by the FTC will no doubt be an attempt to find out how Google behaves in the market, all in hopes of finding support for their alleged antitrust violations. The FTC can contact you in a number of ways, detailed below. As the recipient of an FTC inquiry that is not purely voluntary, you are obligated to provide certain information to the FTC. The nature and extent of this information will vary depending on your company, your role in the market, your relationship with Google, and the FTC’s investigation itself.

Please see full alert below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Reed Smith | Attorney Advertising

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