The Case Against Google-Yahoo

Google and Yahoo say there are plenty of reasons why their recently announced plan to work together on Internet-search advertising should pass muster with regulators. For starters, it’s not a merger and it covers only a small part of Yahoo’s search business. Besides, it’s not exclusive — so either side can strike comparable deals with third parties. The deal was carefully crafted to not cause anti-competition concern, says Dana Wagner, Google’s competition counsel. “The [Justice Dept.] has never blocked a nonexclusive deal,” Wagner says.Don’t count on it, Google. Antitrust officials at the U.S. Justice Dept. are about to get an earful on why they should be leery of a partnership between the No. 1 and No. 2 search engines. The deal will only widen Google’s dominance of the online advertising market, opponents say.

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