Google, Shannon Bond, Us Justice Department discussed on All Things Considered


Aurora school dot org's It's all things considered from NPR news. I'm Ari Shapiro in Washington. And I'm Tanya, mostly in South Pasadena, California, The US Justice Department and 11 states are suing Google, accusing it of squeezing out competitors and monopolizing Internet search. Government says the tech giant is hurting consumers by making it hard for rival search engines to gain a foothold in PR. Shannon Bond covers Google, which we should note is among NPR's financial supporters. Hi, Shannon. So how does the government alleged Google is hurting its competitors? Well. In short, it's as Google is abusing its power, and this case is really all about Google's dominance. The Justice Department says about 80% of Internet searches in the U. S go through Google, and that number is even bigger on mobile phones. And that's because Google has spent a lot of money over the years to be the default search engine on many browsers and phones like Apple iPhones, and the government says that's made it hard for other companies to compete, hears US Deputy Attorney General Jeff Rosen. If the government does not enforce the antitrust laws to enable competition, we could lose the next wave of innovation. If that happens, Americans may never get to see the next Google. How is Google responding to these charges? Well, it says this lawsuit is deeply fly. You know, it says people aren't forced to use Google. They choose to use it because it's the best search engine. And Google also says these contracts were talking about to be the default search provider aren't unfair. It compares it to a company that makes cereal paying a supermarket for, you know, better placement on the shelf and that, you know, that doesn't mean that other serial isn't also there on the shelf for you to buy. So Google says consumers can and do choose which search engine they want to use. Okay, Shannon, but I bet if I were to ask one of these other search engines, they would actually say Google doesn't make it easy for them. That's right. So you know on many phones, as we've said Google search is the default because of these contracts. That's especially true of phones that run on Google's Android software, which is the majority of phones in the world. I spoke to Gabriel Weinberg. He's the CEO of Duck Duck, Go another search engine. And he says it takes a lot of steps to change all the default settings there and people are people just don't do that. And Weinberg says that's why his company has only been able to get about 2% market share and search. But if it was really one click like Google itself says it should be. We think that 2% would be easily 20% today. So, Weinberg says it should be easier to change search writers and we should also note here that duck duck go, is also a financial supporter of NPR. So what could this lawsuit means Google going to be broken up? That's really the big question. And, you know, the Justice Department's lawsuit doesn't get into specifics, but officials have said all options are on the table. That could mean pushing Google to split off some businesses. But you know this is going to take a long time. If we look back to the last big antitrust lawsuit against Tech giant that was Microsoft in the 19 nineties that took years to resolve. So this is a long road. We're going to be on And you know, In the meantime, we're just two weeks away from the election. Is it possible the timing of this suit is also politically motivated? Well, there certainly have been questions over why the Department of Justice is filing the suit. Now, you know, we have heard the Trump Administration talk a lot about cracking down on big tech. Justice officials say. You know, this is a result of a 16 month long investigation. It's not driven by any kind of political schedule or considerations, but I think the backdrop to this is there has been the real change in Washington after years of this hands off approach to the tech industry. Now Republicans and Democrats are much more skeptical about the power of thes. Big companies. Definitely a lot to follow here. That's NPR. Shannon Bond. Thank you so much. Thanks, Tanya. There's a thing called the mom penalty. It's the price women pay when they step back from their jobs to have kids. The penalty is severe. For well educated, highly paid women Stepping down the career ladder puts their earning power and futures as female leaders at risk. Now the pandemic is piling on. As NPR's Andrea Shu explains, Joyce Chen was that working mom who somehow was making it all work? She's an associate professor of development economics at the Ohio State University. She was eyeing a promotion to full professor next year, a rare achievement for women and economics. And then came the pandemic. It's almost impossible to do research every skies of circumstances, You know, there's always something going on and somebody means something or something's not working. Her husband's been tied up with a huge pandemic related project. So she has been the parent keeping things together for their three kids, which means her own research is now on hold. You know, the first month or two, I thought, maybe I'd be able to get back to you. But that never really happened. She's miss Dad on grant opportunities, and she hasn't submitted any papers for publication. This year. She's turned down collaborations. And, of course, it's not just women are having to do that now, but you know, that's something that's gonna ripple out through your entire career. Really. 10 has had four productive years but now wonders of that promotion might be derailed. Harvard economist Claudia Goldin has seen this division of Labour play out for decades in affluent, highly educated families, just like Chen's, and she's seeing it play out now in the pandemic. Women just step into that void, creating not just the mom penalty, but the dad premium in normal times. It's driven by the biological clock. Women step back to have and raise kids Justus..

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