TripAdvisor CEO Stephen Kaufer applauds DOJ lawsuit against Google | Instant News

Many people in Silicon Valley may be furious about Alphabet’s Google Justice Department antitrust lawsuit, but part of the tech industry is applauding the move: online travel reservation operators. look in the tech giant. The DOJ and 11 Republican attorneys general are going after Google for allegedly illegally maintaining a search monopoly by cutting rivals off major distribution channels. “We believe the DOJ is taking an important first step … long overdue, but welcome nonetheless. Google is using its dominance in Internet access control to the detriment of other companies,” Kaufer told CNBC in a telephone interview. At this week’s GeekWire summit, Peter Kern, CEO of Expedia, said, “We don’t have an ax to grind against Google, except we don’t think the market is fair.” In a long time. blog post following the DOJ announcement, Google chief legal officer Kent Walker has refuted the government’s claims. Online booking sites are the first to admit that Google’s preferential ranking for its own search results when consumers are looking for travel options impairs their ability to generate traffic. In recent years, Google has launched a range of travel services – from Google Flight to Google Hotel Ads. TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Booking Holdings were originally the go-to sites for secure travel before Google disrupted the industry. If a consumer uses the Google search engine to find the best London hotels or New York’s proposed flights York in London, results showing at the top are from Google’s own travel portal, while results from other booking sites are often ranked lower, hampering their ability to generate organic traffic. Competition from Google has driven booking sites TripAdvisor, Expedia and Booking Holdings to increase ad spend, and Skift Research estimates that globally, the travel industry has spent as much as $ 16 billion or more advertised on Google in 2019. Kaufer went so far as to say that TripAdvisor, best known for its travel reviews and content, would be in a different position if it weren’t for Google. “I have no doubt that Trip would be a much bigger business today.” However, advertising budgets have been slashed in 2020 due to the coronavirus outbreak, and analysts don’t expect spending to return to pre-pandemic levels until travel bookings rebound. in a spectacular way. TripAdvisor shares, as of Thursday’s close, were down more than 45% in the past 12 months. Expedia has seen a drop of almost 25% over the past 52 weeks, while Booking Holdings has fallen 9% over the same period. Travel officials are now waiting to see what lawmakers do next and whether the DOJ lawsuit will result in a change in its search engine practices by Google, which would be a potentially significant victory for the industry. Booking Holdings report all their income in the former. week of November. .

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