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Google emerges from FTC investigation relatively unscathed

The agreement with the Federal Trade Commission covers only some of the issues raised in a wide-ranging antitrust investigation.
Oklahoman Published: January 4, 2013
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In brief

Google probe

comes to end

Google has settled a U.S. government inquiry into its business practices without making major concessions on how it runs its search engine, the most influential gateway to digital information and commerce.

Thursday's agreement with the Federal Trade Commission covers only some of the issues raised in a wide-ranging antitrust investigation that could have culminated in a regulatory crackdown that reshapes Internet search, advertising and mobile computing.

But the FTC didn't find any reason to impose radical changes, to the relief of Google and technology trade groups worried about overzealous regulation discouraging future innovation. The resolution disappointed consumer rights groups and Google rivals such as Microsoft Corp., which had lodged complaints with regulators in hopes of legal action that would split up or at least hobble the Internet's most powerful company.

Google is still trying to settle a similar antitrust inquiry in Europe.

Associated Press

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