Federal Trade Commission Stands by Decision with Google

According to cnet.com, after some internal documents were leaked via The Wall Street Journal saying that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) should have sued Google for some of its practices (like allegedly stealing content from Amazon, Yelp, and TripAdvisor, among other things), the FTC released a statement saying that their decision not to prosecute was in keeping with the recommendations made by their own Bureau of Competition, Bureau of Economics, and Office of General Counsel.

For its part, Google accepted terms to improve some areas of competition in search and advertising, as well as agreeing to certain commitments issued by the FTC.  According to the FTC, Google has thus far abided by those terms.

The FTC claims that all five commissioners on the bipartisan panel agreed that there was no legal basis to take action on the original basis of the investigation.  They went on to express regret over the unintentional public disclosure of the confidential information that was released.  (The documents were released as a Freedom of Information Act request, and were never intended to be released to the public.  According to The Wall Street Journal, the FTC requested to have the documents back, but The Wall Street Journal refused.)

So, for now, Google is in the clear, at least with the Federal Trade Commission, since it has not violated any of the terms that it agreed to.

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