Ohio Legal professional Common Dave Yost has filed a lawsuit asking a courtroom to declare Google a public utility and to control it as one within the newest twist on the escalating authorized efforts to rein within the firm that runs the web’s dominant search engine
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Legal professional Common Dave Yost filed a lawsuit Tuesday asking a courtroom to declare Google a public utility and to control it as one within the newest twist on the escalating authorized efforts to rein within the firm that runs the web’s dominant search engine.
The Republican official is alleging that Google has been abusing its energy in a manner that’s discriminatory and anti-competitive to Ohio residents.
“While you personal the railroad or the electrical firm or the cellphone tower, you need to deal with everybody the identical and provides all people entry,” Yost mentioned in a press release.
He added that Google’s use of its web search steers Ohioans to the corporate’s personal merchandise.
Google skewered the lawsuit as a misguided try to drive modifications that might diminish the standard of its search outcomes and damage small companies that may not in any other case be discovered by prospects.
“Ohioans merely don’t need the federal government to run Google like a fuel or electrical firm,” Google mentioned in a press release. “This lawsuit has no foundation in reality or legislation and we’ll defend ourselves in opposition to it in courtroom.”
Yost mentioned Ohio is the primary state within the nation to hunt a courtroom declaration that Google is a public utility that must be topic to authorities regulation.
Whereas the lawsuit is just not in search of financial damages, it’s asking the courtroom to require Google “to supply sources or opponents rights equal to its personal,” that means the corporate shouldn’t prioritize the position of Google-owned merchandise, companies and web sites on its search outcomes.
The grievance is simply the newest in a sequence of authorized threats the tech big is dealing with each within the U.S. and overseas, together with a multi-state antitrust lawsuit assailing Google’s enterprise practices, which Yost additionally joined in December.
That is only one of three main antitrust lawsuits filed in opposition to Google throughout the U.S. final autumn, together with an tried crackdown by the U.S. Justice Division. Google has vowed to fiercely contest the allegations in every of these lawsuits in a battle that’s anticipated to take years to resolve.