Google Warns Customers About Antitrust Bills

Google on Thursday warned some customers that antitrust bills targeting the tech giant could jeopardize services that small businesses rely on.

Why it matters: By turning to its customers, Google could elicit opposition from small businesses, which could cause a stir in the push for legislation.

Driving the news: Google sends emails to small and medium-sized businesses that use its free advertising, analytics, and business profile tools, telling them that antitrust bills in the House and Senate could “cost time and money.” ‘ ‘money to your business’. Google said the dangers could include:

  • It’s harder for customers to find businesses because listings, including address and hours of operation, may no longer appear in Google search results or on Google Maps.
  • Harm digital marketing effectiveness if Google Ads products were dismantled and disconnected from Google Analytics.

What they say : “[W]We are concerned that the controversial set of congressional bills could have unintended consequences, especially for small businesses that have relied on digital tools to adapt, recover and reach new customers throughout the pandemic,” a Google spokesperson told Axios.

  • Google declined to say how many companies it contacted. Customers using certain Google products will also see an invitation to encourage them to sign up to receive more billing information.

Between the lines : Google joins Amazon in warning companies that are knowledgeable about their platforms of antitrust risks.

  • Amazon tells sellers the bills could compromise their ability to host their businesses on its platform.

The other side : A GOP aide who worked on the legislation told Axios that there was nothing in the bill that would force Amazon to kick third-party sellers off its platform, and that would be a political choice of Amazon. .

  • Additionally, generally declared assistant products, the legislation prevented companies from favoring their own and services or discriminating against rivals in a way that harms competition.

Overview : Antitrust bills in the House and Senate intended to regulate the biggest tech companies are gaining momentum.

  • A bipartisan group of triggers led by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) introduced the American Innovation and Choice Online Act this month, the companion to House legislation that prohibits platforms from unfairly favoring their own services.
  • Google criticized the bill, with Vice President of Government Affairs and Public Policy Mark Isakowitz saying, “It would sever a wide range of useful services from major American companies, while making those services less secure, less private and less secure.

Next steps : Google launched a legislation website and urged its small business customers to sign up to receive more information about bills.

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