Home News Gannett, Leading News Publisher, Sues Google for Ad Tech Monopoly

Gannett, Leading News Publisher, Sues Google for Ad Tech Monopoly

by admin
Gannett sues Google

Gannett, a prominent news publisher itself accused of monopolistic practices, has lodged a lawsuit against Google, alleging monopoly in ad technology. This development is the most recent in a series of legal actions directed at the internet behemoth, and it echoes many of the arguments put forth by the Department of Justice in their second lawsuit against Google earlier this year. As the largest news publisher in the US, Gannett argues that Google has exploited the market to their own benefit and to the detriment of publishers, readers, and other stakeholders. “Google has controlled market trading to their advantage, undermining publishers, readers and everyone else,” Gannett CEO Mike Reed stated in a conversation with CNBC. “Digital advertising fuels the online economy. Absence of fair competition for digital ad space hinders publishers from investing in their newsrooms.”

Gannett, the proprietor of USA Today and numerous local newspapers, asserts that Google holds an expansive control over the online ad industry, which results in reduced ad expenditure despite an increasing online audience. The main argument in the complaint is that Google owns the largest ad exchange and ad server, both obtained through acquisition rather than organic growth, and this has led to a decrease in industry revenue.

“Content creators, including hundreds of our local news outlets, generate substantial value but fail to see any financial returns due to Google, who as an intermediary, monopolizes markets for essential software and technology products utilized by publishers and advertisers to purchase and sell ad space,” wrote Mike Reed, Gannett’s CEO. “Google leverages that conflict of interest for its own gain and at the cost of publishers, readers, and everyone else. Our lawsuit details numerous significantly anticompetitive and deceptive acts by Google, beginning as early as 2009 and continuing till the present day.”

In response, Google told BuyTechBlog that its services are popular due to their quality and not a lack of competition. “These allegations are simply inaccurate. Publishers have multiple choices when it comes to leveraging advertising technology to monetize. In fact, Gannett uses various competing ad services, including Google Ad Manager,” Dan Taylor, VP of Google Ads, said. Google maintains that the average large publisher utilizes six different platforms to sell ads, and advertisers and media agencies use over three platforms to buy ads. Google describes its ad tech fees as transparent and in line with industry standards.

However, Gannett’s allegations mirror those of the DOJ, which filed a lawsuit earlier this year to dismantle Google’s ad business. The DOJ, alongside eight states, accused Google of maintaining a monopoly over search and search-related advertising, which, in turn, raised barriers to market entry, and deterred potential competitors from joining the market.

Gannett has previously faced monopoly accusations. Despite being over 116 years old, the company was purchased by New Media Investment Group and merged with GateHouse Media in 2019, retaining the Gannett brand. Post-merger, Gannett laid off over half its workforce and closed multiple local news outlets. The company, which owned 261 daily and 302 weekly newspapers after the merger, reduced its totals to 217 daily and 175 weekly newspapers by the end of 2022, partly due to sales to local buyers. Furthermore, the company reduced its workforce from around 25,000 at the time of acquisition to 11,200 as per the most recent filing report.

BuyTechBlog selects all recommended products independently of our parent company. Some of our stories contain affiliate links, which may earn us an affiliate commission if you make a purchase through one of these links. All prices are correct at the time of publishing.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Gannett sues Google

Who is the plaintiff in the lawsuit against Google for monopolizing ad tech?

The plaintiff is Gannett, the largest news publisher in the US.

Why is Gannett suing Google?

Gannett is suing Google for allegedly monopolizing the ad technology market, which they claim is to the detriment of publishers, readers, and other stakeholders.

What is Gannett’s main argument in their lawsuit against Google?

Gannett’s main argument is that Google, by owning the largest ad exchange and ad server (both acquired rather than built organically), exercises an overly broad control over the online ad industry, leading to decreased industry revenue.

What is Google’s response to Gannett’s lawsuit?

Google has refuted Gannett’s claims, stating that its services are popular due to their quality, not due to a lack of competition. Google also asserts that publishers have multiple choices when it comes to leveraging advertising technology to monetize.

Has Gannett faced monopoly accusations before?

Yes, Gannett has previously faced accusations of monopolistic behavior, particularly after its merger with GateHouse Media in 2019.

More about Gannett sues Google

You may also like


Adam_P June 21, 2023 - 6:29 pm

A little rich coming from gannett, dont u think?? Pot calling the kettle black much?

SarahInnovates June 21, 2023 - 7:20 pm

Honestly its about time someone stood up to these tech giants! Go Gannett!

Donna_the_Digital_Diva June 21, 2023 - 9:10 pm

Everyone uses google tools because they work. If gannett doesnt like it, then they should make a better platform! Simple as that.

TechEnthusiast1990 June 22, 2023 - 12:14 am

Can’t deny Google’s hold over the ad industry. Yet, Gannett isn’t all that innocent, they’ve had their fair share of monopoly accusations too.

TomtheNewsGuy June 22, 2023 - 12:24 am

Whoa, Google in another legal tangle? Not surprising really… how many more we gonna see this year?

CyberOracle June 22, 2023 - 12:56 am

If gannet wins this one, it could open the flood gates… not sure if google will let that happen tho, their legal team is top notch.


Leave a Comment