The FTC Gives Google a Free Pass

Google CEO Larry Page approaches the federal building in San Francisco, on April 18, 2012 Photograph by Eric Risberg/AP Photo

That sound you hear today—that’s the sound of Google’s knuckles being rapped, every so lightly, by the Federal Trade Commission. The agency settled its lengthy antitrust investigation into the Web’s dominant search service, and the results, announced today, pretty much completely exonerate the company and require it to make only a few relatively minor changes to the way it conducts itself. Among other things, Google agreed to limit its annotation of content from other websites and to give advertisers more control over their ad campaigns. Separately, it agreed to license certain mobile phone patents that it acquired in its purchase of Motorola Mobility.

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