I’m not the only one troubled by Google’s new Search Plus Your World — Google’s aggressive push to include social results in its search that seems to favour Google+ over other social media services. So is the FTC.
Bloomberg reports the FTC has expanded its antitrust probe to look at whether or not Google is giving preferential treatment to its own products, like Google+, in its newly revamped search.
As I argued yesterday, I don’t really care for the sake of Twitter or Facebook or Flickr whether or not Google gives its services preferential treatment. What matters is relevance. And if Google is promoting its own services at the expense of relevance, that’s bad for consumers.
Ultimately, when the FTC investigates antitrust, it’s not doing it to protect businesses, it’s doing it to protect consumers. Because that’s who is ultimately hurt in all this.