Microsoft connection looms in new Google lawsuit

TradeComet sues Google, claiming anticompetitive conduct. Maybe it's just happenstance but the company's law firm shares a history with Microsoft

TradeComet.com has sued Google, claiming that the search company abused its market dominance to "squash" competition.

Rick Rule, who works for the company's law firm, Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, claimed that SourceTool.com and its subsidiary, TradeComet.com, "had a thriving business before Google decided to eliminate them as a competitor...We believe this complaint has strong merit and represents a serious antitrust violation."

It also turns out that Rule helped represent Microsoft during that company's antitrust battle with the United States government. The Cadwalader law firm also was employed by Microsoft on its failed bid to acquire Yahoo.

In its statement, which was issued late Tuesday, TradeComet said it filed the lawsuit "when Google refused to stop engaging in predatory conduct to block search traffic by imposing massive, unjustified price increases. Google's anti-competitive conduct eliminated TradeComet as a competitor."

TradeComet.com said that its business-to-business search engine subsidiary was targeted by Google, which "then engaged in illegal conduct to diminish and ultimately extinguish SourceTool.com's platform."

A spokesman for Google said that the company's lawyers had not had a chance to review the lawsuit. But in a statement, Google said that "the advertising market in which Google operates is highly competitive and advertisers have a huge range of choices."

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About the author

Charles Cooper is an executive editor at CNET News. He has covered technology and business for more than 25 years, working at CBSNews.com, the Associated Press, Computer & Software News, Computer Shopper, PC Week, and ZDNet. E-mail Charlie.

 

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