Reports: FTC examining Google's display ads

The alleged inquiry concerns an ad grouping practice known as 'bundling'

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has reportedly launched an investigation into Google's display ad business amid complaints from rivals that the company is abusing its power in how it sells online-graphical and video ads.

The examination, which has been reported in The Wall Street Journal and other news outlets, concerns a process of grouping ad-related services together known as "tying" or "bundling." Some of Google's advertising-technology rivals have complained to antitrust authorities that the company has been bundling those ad services for website publishers so that the publishers would have to use them all rather than just one Google service, reports say.

The FTC and Google both declined to comment on the reports.

The FTC examination is still in its early stages, the reports say, and may not ultimately result in a formal probe.

The reported inquiry comes just several months after Google settled a different antitrust case with the FTC over its search engine and search advertising business.

After that 19-month investigation, Google agreed to stop certain search practices such as scraping Web content from rivals and allegedly passing it off as its own.

Display advertising comprises the videos, text, images and other interactive ads appearing on the desktop and mobile devices.

In display ads, Google's DoubleClick advertising technology provides its advertising technology to publishers, agencies and other advertisers. The technology, which Google acquired in 2007, creates an auction marketplace for the trading of display ad space.

Google generates the bulk of its revenue through advertising. Google websites' advertising brought in sales of over US$31 billion in 2012; total Google revenue was over $46 billion.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags internetbusiness issuesGoogleadvertisinglegalsearch enginesantitrustInternet-based applications and services

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Zach Miners

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?