Reasons for Favoring Google over the DOJ

In our antitrust survey, we presented participants with a summary of the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) antitrust lawsuit against Google. The lawsuit centers on Google’s agreements with internet browser companies (e.g., Firefox) and mobile device manufacturers (e.g. Apple, Samsung, LG) to make Google their default search engine. We asked survey respondents questions about the strength of the DOJ’s case, who they’d favor, and why they would favor that party. Below are some of the reasons why participants ended up favoring Google over the DOJ.

Google Has Earned Its Market Share

Many of the respondents saw the case as simply as Google deserves its dominant market share because it has a high quality product. Participants said that they and others choose to use Google is the best search engine, gives the best search results, and it is easy to use. They believed that whatever monopoly-like control Google has over the industry, it was well-earned.

Google is the Best At What It Does
"Google made its place in the market before others, so others no longer can compete with Google. That’s a good advantage of being early in the race, no one can reach you, unless you let them."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"Google has grown to be a large entity, that's what being successful is all about."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"Google helps in everything we do when we need answers or opinions."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"Google is one of the top search engines. People remember that and always use it first over others."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"Google does more good than harm."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"Google is a leading brand and I will support them through anything."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"I do not feel that Google is intentionally trying to wipe out their competitors. I also feel that manufacturing companies, such as Apple, agree to contracts with Google because it makes their device more desirable, since Google is a widely used search engine. If my smartphone opened up a search engine that was unfamiliar to me, it would be a bit awkward and I would think that Apple has outdated technology."
Google is the Best At What It Does
"I like Google because they provide more information. I use Bing too but sometimes they have no responses."
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People Can Change Their Default Search Engine

The idea that people have a choice in which search engine they use was a popular sentiment. Participants favoring Google over the DOJ believed that changing the default search engine was a matter of choice, and not solely controlled by Google. Some respondents talked about how easy it is to change search engines and echoed the theme offered by others – that people choose Google because it is the best search engine available, not because Google forces them to.

People Choose To Use Google
"As there are other search engines to use, it is up to the consumers which to use. It's relatively easy to change search browsers on our computer as default."
People Choose To Use Google
"As Google stated, people (such as myself) use Google because we choose to. It does not mean that people cannot choose to use other search engines.."
People Choose To Use Google
"People could always change their search engines to an other one but Google is a very trusted search engine and that is why everyone uses Google."
People Choose To Use Google
"The default search engine can be changed. I currently use Bing on my devices because I choose to, not because I'm forced to."
People Choose To Use Google
"Google made a good point regarding there being other search engines out there people can use, so it doesn't force people to use their platform."
People Choose To Use Google
"People have the choice to change their search engine from Google to anything else."
People Choose To Use Google
"Google can’t really control what people decide to wake up and use, or force them to use that specific search engine."
People Choose To Use Google
"I don't think Google is monopolizing search engines because you can still use other search engines if you want to."
People Choose To Use Google
"Google has not done anything wrong. They are not preventing other search engines for being used. While it is true they have cornered the market on search engines, it is also true that no one is forced to use their services."
People Choose To Use Google
"No one is forced to use their search engine, we all choose to."
People Choose To Use Google
"I dislike Google and their dishonesty but I believe they’re correct in their assertion that nobody’s forced to use them."
People Choose To Use Google
"I use Google not because I am forced to, but because of my choice. I usually find google easier to use than other search engines and whenever Google isn't the main search engine I try to change Google to main search engine.."
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Other Companies Would Also Do What Google is Doing: "It's Just Business"

Many participants believed that Google’s agreements with device manufacturers and browser companies were smart, competitive business decisions and not inherently anticompetitive. Additionally, some respondents mentioned that any other company would enact the same practices if it had a product as good as Google’s search engine. Many participants favoring Google over the DOJ drew comparisons between Google’s practices and Microsoft’s deals with PC manufacturers.

It's Just Business
"Any search engine company would do the same. I feel if you are in that business you know the risks and you also would try to do the same thing."
It's Just Business
"Google is trying to protect its company and continue growing."
It's Just Business
"Any company could make this agreement with cell phone companies to be the default search engine."
It's Just Business
"Competition in the market is everything. Google bid on contracts and got them on major items. Anyone could bid and get them. We use Microsoft Word and other Office products. We don't HAVE TO. There are alternatives, but that is the "going" thing so they get all of the business. You could say this about PLENTY of other companies who have negotiated and worked their way to the top."
It's Just Business
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It's Just Business
"Other companies do the same thing anyway, and there aren't lawsuits against them."
It's Just Business
"Google has a valid point that they have competed with other firms for the right to enter the agreements. That said, they have, by default become in essence a monopoly due to the sheer number of agreements they've entered."
It's Just Business
"Google is a business, it has to solicit deals with tech companies that utilize search engines in the same way other search engines do. The companies have the right to choose what search engine they wish to partner with."
It's Just Business
"Google is just doing business and it doesn't seem that they are intentionally trying to bring down other search engines."
It's Just Business
"Google is just doing business and making their engine more reliable and easier to use. The other search engines just need to do a better job on how to make theirs better."
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Negative Opinions of the DOJ's Actions Against Google

Other participants’ reasons for favoring Google over the DOJ were that the DOJ’s pursuit of this case was unfounded and unnecessary.

The DOJ's Charges Are Unfounded
"This is just another example of a government agency being mad that someone is succeeding in business and wanting to shoot them down.."
The DOJ's Charges Are Unfounded
"In some cases the Department of Justice attempts to over-regulate industry."
The DOJ's Charges Are Unfounded
"First of all, Google has been in the search engine industry for nearly 26 years so the DOJ restraining them will cause the network balance to fall as most other search engines are yet to be mature enough."
The DOJ's Charges Are Unfounded
"Since they compete against other search engine's product such as Bing, I would not call it anticompetitve. Furthermore, one of their main competitor is also a big company. Furthermore, they keep passing the necessary antitrust reviews."
The DOJ's Charges Are Unfounded
"You buy a new computer preloaded with software that I am certain there are agreements in force for the computer company to promote certain software. This is done in many other facets of business. There are open source search engines and plenty of other search engines out there."
The DOJ's Charges Are Unfounded
"Using Google is voluntary. People continue to use Google because they are meeting the people needs."
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