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World

Google, Facebook agree to join hands against potential anti-trust lawsuit: Report

  • Google and Facebook were aware that their cooperative agreement could potentially trigger anti-trust investigations, and subsequently strategised on how to deal with them.
  • According to a spokesperson from Google, such agreements over anti-trust threats are extremely common in the industry, to avoid any unprecedented legal challenges.
Published December 22, 2020

On Monday, Facebook Inc. and Alphabet Inc's Google agreed to "cooperate and assist one another" in the case of an investigation into their collaboration in online advertising; which could be a potential breach of anti-trust laws in the United States.

As reported by the Wall Street Journal, an un-redacted version of a lawsuit was cited in which 10 states filed a case against Google, accusing the tech giant of working with Facebook in an unlawful manner that violated antitrust laws, in an effort to boost its already-dominant online advertising avenues.

According to the report, the lawsuit articulated that Google and Facebook were aware that their cooperative agreement could potentially trigger anti-trust investigations, and subsequently strategised on how to deal with them.

According to a spokesperson from Google, such agreements over anti-trust threats are extremely common in the industry, to avoid any unprecedented legal challenges.

The un-redacted draft version of the lawsuit, as reported by the Journal, showed that Facebook's Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg signed a written agreement with Google, and cites an email in which Sandberg told Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg and other key executives that “this is a big deal strategically".

Facebook has yet to comment on these allegations.

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