Consumer Watchdog is calling on the Justice Department to launch an antitrust action against Google, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.
In a press conference earlier this week, Consumer Watchdog, funded by the Rose Foundation of Oakland to investigate Google’s privacy practices, called for several actions to be taken against Google. One possible solution Consumer Watchdog presented was to break up Google entirely, which would have huge implications for the search engine optimization (SEO) industry.
"We, as an organization, have concluded that there’s enough evidence on the table to warrant this, to go beyond the reactive steps that the regulatory agencies have followed up until now," John Simpson of Consumer Watchdog told the San Francisco Chronicle.
Though the Justice Department doesn’t normally take direction from consumer groups, antitrust pressure against Google is building from multiple angles. In the past few months, the Federal Trade Commission assembled a team to question the legality of Google’s acquisition of the ad network AdMob. Similar concerns were raised by the Justice Department in regards to the settlement of the Google Books case.
Talking to SearchEngineLand.com, Google responded to Consumer Watchdog’s claims. "We totally understand that with size and success comes scrutiny. Although given their track record, even if we broke Google in half tomorrow, Consumer Watchdog would probably insist that we split halves into quarters," said Google spokesperson Adam Kovacevich.