The US Department of Justice (DOJ) Tuesday filed a federal antitrust complaint against Google LLC, which alleged that Google’s monopolization of “multiple digital advertising technology products” violated Section 1 and Section 2 of the Sherman Act.
The DOJ’s 153-page complaint alleged that Google abused its monopoly power regarding its ad tech products, which disadvantaged other website publishers and advertisers in addition to violating Sections 1 and 2 of the Sherman Act. Additionally, the DOJ said it intends to “halt Google’s anticompetitive scheme, unwind Google’s monopolistic grip on the market, and restore competition to digital advertising.” In its complaint, the DOJ requested a court order for the divestiture of Google’s ad tech businesses.
Along with the DOJ, eight states’ Attorney Generals joined as plaintiffs in the lawsuit against Google. The eight states are California, Colorado, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Tennessee and Vermont.
In 2020, the DOJ filed a similar civil antitrust complaint against Google. In that case the DOJ alleged that Google’s advertising practices “unlawfully maintain[ed] monopolies through anticompetitive and exclusionary practices in the search and search advertising markets and to remedy the competitive harms.” Additionally, in April 2022, Google faced a different federal class action antitrust lawsuit over its Google Maps monopoly and its acquisition of Waze.