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Class-action suit: Google set up monopoly by loading Android devices with its own apps

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Consumer rights law firm Hagens Berman said it filed a nationwide antitrust class-action lawsuit against Google Inc alleging the company “illegally monopolized” the Internet and mobile search market in the United States.

The lawsuit alleges that Google has expanded its monopoly of the internet search market by pre-loading its applications onto Android mobile devices through its Mobile Application Distribution Agreements.

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According to the lawsuit, Google’s role in placing this suite of apps, including Google Play and YouTube, has hampered the market and kept the price of devices made by competing manufactures like Samsung Electronics and HTC Corp artificially high.

Google said Android and Google can be used independent of each other.

“Anyone can use Android without Google and anyone can use Google without Android. Since Android’s introduction, greater competition in smartphones has given consumers more choices at lower prices,” Matt Kallman, a Google spokesman, told Reuters.

Steve Berman, the attorney representing consumers, alleged that Google had not achieved its monopoly by offering a better search engine, but through anti-competitive placement and market manipulation.

The case is in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, 5:14-cv-02007-HRL.

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[Image via Agence France-Presse]


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Pennsylvania Dem unloads on GOPers who pushed to reopen as they hid colleague’s COVID-19 infection

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Pennsylvania state Rep. Brian Sims (D) lashed out at Republican lawmakers who remained silent after testing positive for COVID-19.

Democrats this week accused Republicans of withholding information after Rep. Andrew Lewis (R) tested positive for the virus.

"It's been a week, perhaps longer, that House Republican leadership knew that at least one of their members had tested positive for COVID-19," Sims explained in a Facebook post. "But they didn't go on quarantine until they were done serving alongside us, especially those of us that serve on the State Government Committee."

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‘Art of the Deal’ ghostwriter: ‘Psychopath’ Trump is ‘driven by an insatiable narcissistic hunger’ and an obsessive ‘need to dominate’

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President Ronald Reagan, in the 1980s, famously asserted that someone who agreed with him 70% of the time was a 70% ally and not a 30% enemy. But President Donald Trump, on the other hand, is furious if someone disagrees with him even on rare occasions. Author Tony Schwartz, who co-wrote or ghost-wrote Trump’s famous 1987 book, “The Art of the Deal,” analyzes Trump’s mentality in a May 28 article for Medium — stressing that the president is motivated, above all else, by a “need to dominate.”

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Bill Barr and the White House plan to collect information on social media users when Trump signs Executive Order: reports

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A draft of President Donald Trump's social media executive order shows it would create disturbing structures that could allow the President of the United States to personally target social media companies he feels are taking action against his supporters, enable his supporters to report that action directly to the White House, and empower the Attorney General of the United States to collect publicly available "watch-lists" of social media users that monitor not only their online activities but their offline activities as well.

The draft is not final, but both the speed with which it will be signed and reports show it likely has not gone through interagency review, as CNN's Brian Fung, who calls it "hastily conceived," notes.

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