Google has posted a missive on Microsoft’s attempted takeover of Yahoo where it cries wolf against the deal based on (I’m serious here) competition grounds.
David Drummond, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer at Google writes:
…Microsoft’s hostile bid for Yahoo! raises troubling questions. This is about more than simply a financial transaction, one company taking over another. It’s about preserving the underlying principles of the Internet: openness and innovation.
Could Microsoft now attempt to exert the same sort of inappropriate and illegal influence over the Internet that it did with the PC? While the Internet rewards competitive innovation, Microsoft has frequently sought to establish proprietary monopolies — and then leverage its dominance into new, adjacent markets.
Could the acquisition of Yahoo! allow Microsoft — despite its legacy of serious legal and regulatory offenses — to extend unfair practices from browsers and operating systems to the Internet? In addition, Microsoft plus Yahoo! equals an overwhelming share of instant messaging and web email accounts. And between them, the two companies operate the two most heavily trafficked portals on the Internet. Could a combination of the two take advantage of a PC software monopoly to unfairly limit the ability of consumers to freely access competitors’ email, IM, and web-based services?
Google, a company with “an overwhelming share” in text ads and search who can take advantage of its dominant position in search to unfairly limit the ability of consumers to be listed fairly is concerned that Microsoft and Yahoo might do a similar thing with email and IM? cough*lol*cough.
To be fair there may be some legitimate competition concerns with the deal, but Google pointing them out will only serve to remind people (and more importantly Governmental Regulatory Authorities) that it doesn’t matter how much bigger and stronger a combined Microsoft/ Yahoo is, Google is still the 1000 pound internet Gorilla in the room.