FTC to probe Google again

Posted by a staff writer

The Federal Trade Commission is taking yet another look at Google, this time over allegations the company used its near-monopolistic position online to sell and serve graphic and video ads.

According to the Wall Street Journal's secret sauces, the inquiry has just started and it is not certain it'll evolve into formalities. The rumor comes shortly after the FTC finished its long running antitrust investigation into Google's web search and search advertising, where the company was let off the hook.

Google brings in heaps of cash from display ads, roughly at 15 percent of the entire $15 billion market. This is helped in particular with ads on YouTube.

Google also turns money by finding ad space on websites across the net, through DoubleClick Ad Exchange, as well as making cash with DoubleClick for Publishers, an ad serving system at the top of the pack in the market. 

There are whispers that Google could be punishing publishers who use ad system DoubleClick for Publishers to utilise non Google technology to sell ad space. Google, a rival reportedly complained to regulators, dangles cash in front of clients so they use the company's AdMeld service for managing ad space rather than tech from the competition.

It is even alleged that it could be waiving services costs if publishers go with Google.

When Google bought Doubleclick in 2007, the WSJ notes, the FTC decided to let the deal go ahead. Even so, it registered concerns that the buy-out had the potential to boost Google's other ad products.