Before reading this antitrust article, check and see which browser you are using
The aggressive DOJ “Not Chickenshit” might get a chance to prove his credentials in a way close to home. As in one case, it could have a direct impact on how you use the internet on your phone and laptop. Most people surf Al Gore’s Internet using Chrome (Google) or Safari (Apple) web browsers. These seeming default options skew the browser market in their favor – small browsers try to push back.
The Chrome browser hosts nearly two-thirds of the world’s Internet activity and is a major driver of traffic to Google’s lucrative search engine. The company sometimes withheld new features that risked reducing traffic to the search engine, people familiar with the rulings said. The Google spokesperson said the company regularly experiments with new features in Chrome and prioritizes user experience, performance and security when making product decisions.
“Google has an incentive to make Chrome a great Google search box,” said Josh Miller, CEO of Browser Company of New York Inc., which is creating a competing product named Arc that he says aims to address workflows. and the needs of the average Internet user.
Controlling about 60% of a market share that sends tons of information to your search engine is the type of behavior that should set off alarm bells in the ears of competent antitrust attorneys. And while it’s true that it’s in Google’s interest to tweak Chrome to be at the forefront of user experience, companies cutting the competition for extra profit is a tale at least as old. than the Sherman Act.
Some competitors have said that Google, which faces a Justice Department lawsuit targeting its dominance in online research, used subtle hints and tricks that make it harder for search engines and third-party browsers to distribute their products through Chrome. A Google spokesperson disputed complaints that Chrome interfered with competitors.
Several startups are also trying to break in, claiming they can make the browser experience more app-friendly and hoping the competitive landscape is changing. Microsoft has mounted a new push with its Edge browser, which has effectively replaced Internet Explorer.
Microsoft having a browser that can keep up to date and compete with other browsers is a bit of a joke — much like any other mention of Microsoft. My favorite (and only) use of Edge is to download Firefox, but hey, the old dog might have learned a new trick.
It’s too soon to know what the Internet’s Brave New World would look like after more browser wars. Do you want to read the hot takes of Above the Law in Brave? Read an article about Amazon monitoring bots in Tor? Time will tell us. If the DOJ isn’t too dumb to target a global tech giant or two, sure.
Chris Williams became social media manager and associate editor for Above the Law in June 2021. Prior to joining the team, he moonlighted as an underage Memelord™ in the Facebook group. Law school memes for Edgy T14s. He endured Missouri long enough to graduate from Washington University at St. Louis School of Law. He’s a former boat builder who can’t swim, a published author on critical race theory, philosophy and humor, and has a love for cycling that sometimes annoys his peers. You can reach him by email at [email protected] and by tweet at @WritesForRent.