Google Plus Packaged With Gmail Raises Antitrust Worries
There may be trouble ahead in the way Google packages Google+ with new Gmail accounts. Bloomberg News reported recently that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has expanded its antitrust investigation of Google to include Google+. The report comes after Google announced that it would include personal data gathered from Google+ in the results of users' searches, a move that raised the hackles of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC).
"Google's business practices raise concerns related to both competition and the implementation of the Commission’s consent order," EPIC said, referring to a settlement that the FTC reached with Google that establishes new privacy safeguards for users of all Google products and services and subjects the company to regular privacy audits. Google first confirmed the FTC’s antitrust investigation in June 2011.
EPIC has also been urging the FTC to investigate whether Google uses Youtube search rankings to give preferential treatment to its own video content over non-Google content...