Europe and the States Are United Against Google’s Alleged Ad Monopoly

The European Commission:

Google provides several adtech services that intermediate between advertisers and publishers in order to display ads on web sites or mobile apps. It operates (i) two ad buying tools – “Google Ads” and “DV 360”; (ii) a publisher ad server, “DoubleClick For Publishers, or DFP”; and (iii) an ad exchange, “AdX”.


The Commission is concerned that Google’s allegedly intentional conducts aimed at giving AdX a competitive advantage and may have foreclosed rival ad exchanges. This would have reinforced Google’s AdX central role in the adtech supply chain and Google’s ability to charge a high fee for its service.

Google’s Dan Taylor:

Today’s Statement of Objections from the European Commission sets out claims that are not new and relate to a narrow part of our advertising business. It fails to recognize how advanced advertising technology helps merchants reach customers and grow their businesses — while lowering costs and expanding choices for consumers.

For what it is worth, the Commission is not alleging these problems are new — it explicitly says “since at least 2014” — nor that AdX represents a dominant role in Google’s ad products. These objections only sound like a rebuttal if you ignore what the Commission actually wrote.

Samuel Stolton and Leah Nylen, Bloomberg:

European Union and US antitrust regulators may have gone their separate ways of late. But they can still agree on one thing: the era of Google’s dominance in advertising technology must end.

The European Commission last week joined the Department of Justice in touting a breakup as a viable remedy for the California-based tech giant’s alleged monopoly abuses.

Not only are the E.U. and U.S. united in their thinking, so too are individual U.S. states and publishers. It is awful compelling to see such a cohesive group objecting to effectively the same kinds of problems.