GOOGLE'S CYBER-VULTURES have begun to circle with the announcement of yet another antitrust investigation into the tech giant.
50 states and territories have signed up to a case led by Texas law enforcement looking in to "potential monopolistic behaviour".
Oh, and so we're clear, this is separate from the main federal investigation currently underway at the department of trade.
California and Alabama aren't taking part in the action, but the District of Columbia and dependency of Puerto Rico have both signed up to make the magic fifty.
As Google has grown and swallowed up many other companies, it's market dominance has become such that it's almost impossible to avoid. From its search engine beginnings, it now controls so many aspects of our daily lives that it's starting to spook the natives.
The multi-billion-dollar fines it has already seen inflicted by the European Union over matters such as its advertising business and the way it lists shopping results have given extra credence to similar action in the US.
The problem will be exactly what anyone can do to make Google sit up and take notice. Even the biggest fines have barely dented the company coffers to the point that it's as easy for Google to pay up and keep going than actually change.
One option could be to break up the business, with the division that serves most of the advertising you see on websites being made into a separate enterprise. This would hit Google hard as its advertising business supports much of its other product and service portfolio.
Another option would be forcing it to sell YouTube, a site so large that it would still be one of the biggest names in tech if it were independent.
Until the case is in full swing, we're unlikely to get an idea of what this particular action's desired end-game is, but it seems clear, for better or worse, that ganging up on Google is a big priority for 2020. μ
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