NJ accuses Google of having an illegal monopoly

New Jersey has joined a lawsuit to accuse Google of having an illegal monopoly on Internet searches.

Google is paying billions to limit competition and stifle the flow of information and a court should consider dissolving part of the company, according to the complaint filed by dozens of states.

“As a gateway to the Internet, Google has systematically degraded the ability of other businesses to access consumers,” the States wrote Thursday.

The lawsuit “sends the message that no company is too powerful to shy away from real accountability,” state attorney general Gurbir Grewal added in a statement.

In a blog post, Google’s chief economic officer defended the company and said changing Google’s search engine would hurt consumers.

“We know that scrutiny of large companies is important and we are ready to answer questions and solve problems,” Adam Cohen wrote. “But this lawsuit aims to rethink research in a way that deprives Americans of useful information and undermines companies’ ability to connect directly with customers.”

The lawsuit, which was partially redacted, also said Google is paying Apple up to $ 12 billion annually to keep Google as the default search engine, limit other search options on androids, and artificially hijack investment. advertising from competitors.

The complaint comes a week after New Jersey asked a court to dismantle Facebook, and reflects a growing bipartisan consensus that some tech companies are too powerful.

New Jersey’s latest trials not only partner with conservative states, but are backed by the federal government, including a US Department of Justice trial filed against Google in October.

This cooperation comes after New Jersey has spent years work with other Democratic attorneys general to challenge federal policies.

Thursday’s lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia by 35 states, Washington DC, Puerto Rico and Guam. The New Jersey role is overseen by Deputy Attorney General Robert Holup, who is also overseeing the Facebook case.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Blake Nelson can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter at @BCunninghamN.

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