Il distretto nord della California con sentenza 29 luglio 2022 , Case 4:21-cv-00229-HSG , Rumble c. Google interviene sull’oggetto con decisione processuale non definitiva.
Lo ricorda Glenn Greenwald in Scheerpost.com il 30.07.2022.
Rumble è una piattaforma di condivisione video (amatoriali e professionali) assai cresciuta di recente: viene quindi naturalmente ostacolata da Youtube/Google.
E’ interessante l’allegazione fattuale di Rumble circa la modalità con cui G. la ostacola:
<< First, by manipulating the algorithms (and/or other means and
mechanisms) by which searched-for-video results are listed, Google
insures [sic] that the videos on YouTube are listed first, and that those
of its competitors, such as Rumble, are listed way down the list on the
first page of the search results, or not on the first page at all.
Second, by pre-installation of the YouTube app (which deters smart phone
manufacturers from pre-installing any competitive video platform
apps) as the default online video app on Google smart phones, and by
entering into anti-competitive, illegal tying agreements with other
smartphone manufacturers to do the same (in addition to requiring
them to give the YouTube app a prime location on their phones’
opening page and making it not-deletable by the user), Google assures
the dominance of YouTube and forecloses competition in the video
platform market >>
E’ pure interessante la precisazione sui contratti di Google con gli Android-based mobile smart device manufacturers and distributors to ensure its monopoly of the video platform market :
<< Plaintiff alleges that once an Android device manufacturer signs an anti-forking agreement,
Google will only provide access to its vital proprietary apps and application program interfaces if
the manufacturer agrees: “(1) to take (that is, pre-install) a bundle of other Google apps (such as its
YouTube app); (2) to make certain apps undeletable (including its YouTube app); and (3) to give
Google the most valuable and important location on the device’s default home screen (including
for its YouTube app).” Id. ¶ 85. As another example, Plaintiff asserts that “Google provides a
share of its search advertising revenue to Android device manufacturers, mobile phone carriers,
competing browsers, and Apple; in exchange, Google becomes the preset default general search
engine for the most important search access points on a computer or mobile device.” Id. ¶ 86.
“And, by becoming the default general search engine, Google is able to continue its manipulation
of video search results using its search engine to self-preference its YouTube platform, making
sure that links to videos on the YouTube platform are listed above the fold on the search results
page.” Id.; see also id. ¶¶ 161–72 (alleging that Google’s revenue sharing agreements allow it to
maintain a monopoly in the general search market and online video platform market).
Plaintiff alleges that Defendant uses these agreements “to ensure that its entire suite of
search-related products (including YouTube) is given premium placement on Android GMS
devices.” Id. ¶ 149. Rumble alleges that the agreements “effectuate a tie” that “reinforces
Google’s monopolies.” Id. ¶ 151. Specifically, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant provides “Android
device manufacturers an all-or-nothing choice: if a manufacturer wants Google Play or GPS, then
the manufacturer must also preinstall, and in some cases give premium placement to, an entire
suite of Google apps, including Google’s search products and Google’s YouTube app.” Id.
Plaintiff alleges that “[t]he forced preinstallation of Google’s apps (including the YouTube app)
deters manufacturers from preinstalling those of competitors, including Rumble’s app. . . . [and]
forecloses distribution opportunities to rival general search engines and video platforms,
protecting Google’s monopolies.” Id. Moreover, Plaintiff alleges that “[i]n many cases” the
agreements expressly prohibit the preinstallation of rival online video platforms, like Rumble. See
id. ¶ 87.
According to Plaintiff, Defendant’s “monopolist’s stranglehold on search, obtained and maintained through anticompetitive conduct, including tying agreements in violation of antitrust
laws, has allowed Google to unfairly and wrongfully direct massive video search traffic to its
wholly-owned YouTube platform” and therefore secure monopoly profits from YouTubegenerated ad revenue. Id. ¶ 176. Plaintiff alleges that because “a very large chunk of that video
search traffic . . . should have rightfully been directly to Rumble’s platform,” Plaintiff and content
creators who have exclusively licensed their videos to Rumble “have lost a massive amount of ad
revenue they would otherwise have received but for Google’s unfair, unlawful, exclusionary and
anticompetitive conduct.” Id >>
Ancora, <<without real dispute, Plaintiff has adequately alleged a Section 2 claim. First, it alleges that Defendant obtained and maintains monopoly power in the online video platform market, asserting that YouTube controls 73% of global online video activity. Id. ¶ 37, 63, 193. And second, Plaintiff alleges among other things that Defendant, with no valid business purpose or benefit to users, designs its search engine algorithms to show users YouTube links instead of links to its competitors’ sites. Id. ¶ 71; see also ¶¶ 68-74. According to Plaintiff, “Rumble and consumers (e.g. content creators) are disadvantaged, and competition is harmed, in the defined market because Google provides self-preferencing search advantages to its wholly-owned YouTube platform as a part of its scheme to maintain its monopoly power, and to reap a
monopolist’s financial rewards.” >>
G. avanza un’interessante teoria (inreressante sarebbe capure quale la ragione distratgegia processuale) per cui la domanda avveraria sarebe in realtià triplice in quanto concernernebbe tre vioalzioni. Deduce che due di queste sono inmfomndante e chiede alla corte di procedere solo sulla terza e di chiudere invece il processo sulle prime due.
La Corte rigetta questa istanza processuale