Apple, others seek to obscure sensitive data in Google antitrust suit

Posted:
in General Discussion edited November 2020
Apple and a number of major tech companies asked a federal judge overseeing the Google antitrust case to hide sensitive information from prying eyes -- namely Google.

Google iOS


The companies asked Judge Amit Mehta of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to designate certain data used in the Justice Department case as "highly confidential," reports Reuters.

A protective order would disallow Google employees from viewing private business contracts and other sensitive information that might be divulged in the process of trying the lawsuit. Apple, for example, already disclosed terms of its relationship with Google and expects to be asked for additional information.

The government could request documents pertaining to deals with competing search engines, including internal discussions at Apple regarding negotiation tactics, the report said. Access to Apple's data could put the iPhone maker at a disadvantage when forging future deals with Google.

Other firms that assisted in the Justice Department's case, including Amazon, AT&T, Comcast, Duck Duck Go, Microsoft, Oracle, Sonos and T-Mobile, separately asked Judge Mehta for similar protections in joint filing. Advertising firm GroupM specifically requested information be "disclosed only on an 'outside attorneys' eyes only' basis," according to the report.

Google for its part offered assurances that access to confidential information would be restricted to two attorneys working for an outside counsel. It also promised to report any disclosures.

The U.S. government is suing Google for allegedly abusing its outsized power in the internet search industry. A Google deal with Apple to maintain its standing as the default search engine in iOS is a centerpiece of the suit. Reports earlier this year suggest Google paid Apple some $9.5 billion in 2018 for the distinction.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 11
    I would have to agree with Apple since DuckDuckGo is involved.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 11
    Of course Apple and others want to obscure sensitive data between the agreement between Apple and Google, because who do you think negotiated the agreement between Google and Apple for the 9.5 billion.   Does anyone here think that Google wanted to pay Apple 9.5 billion to be the default search on Apples platforms?   You would have to be an idiot to think anyone would want to pay that much to become the default on Apples platform. 

    Don't kid yourself, Apple was in full control, and knew that they had Google by the balls, so Apple could leverage their platform, and make Google pay 9.5 billion to be the default on Apples platforms, which doesn't look good for Apple.   Especially since Apple has antitrust cases as well.
    williamlondonmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 3 of 11
    Here is an Apple news story you won't read on Apple Insider:
    Apple is lobbying AGAINST a bill aimed at stopping forced labor in China. They wouldn't want to upset the Chinese government over a little thing like forced labor.
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technology/apple-is-lobbying-against-a-bill-aimed-at-stopping-forced-labor-in-china/ar-BB1bdeDL
    williamlondon
  • Reply 4 of 11
    Here is an Apple news story you won't read on Apple Insider:
    Apple is lobbying AGAINST a bill aimed at stopping forced labor in China. They wouldn't want to upset the Chinese government over a little thing like forced labor.
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technology/apple-is-lobbying-against-a-bill-aimed-at-stopping-forced-labor-in-china/ar-BB1bdeDL
    Nice case of whataboutism, nothing whatsoever to do with the article.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 11
    Does anyone here think that Google wanted to pay Apple 9.5 billion to be the default search on Apples platforms?   You would have to be an idiot to think anyone would want to pay that much to become the default on Apples platform. 
    So why did they? If Google was so sure they didn’t need to be the default, and that customers would wilfully choose to set them as the default, then they wouldn’t have paid it. 

    They obviously felt that in order to maintain their search traffic from iPhone users, they needed to pay up. User choice alone wasn’t enough. 

    In fact it’s so important for them to keep that traffic, that they paid an eye watering nine point five billion dollars to make sure no other search providers became the default. 
    aderutterviclauyycwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 11
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,453member
    Here is an Apple news story you won't read on Apple Insider:
    Apple is lobbying AGAINST a bill aimed at stopping forced labor in China. They wouldn't want to upset the Chinese government over a little thing like forced labor.
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technology/apple-is-lobbying-against-a-bill-aimed-at-stopping-forced-labor-in-china/ar-BB1bdeDL
    AppleInsider did report that story: https://appleinsider.com/articles/20/11/20/apple-said-to-be-among-us-companies-lobbying-against-uighur-forced-labor-bill
    viclauyycBeatswatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 11
    Of course Apple and others want to obscure sensitive data between the agreement between Apple and Google, because who do you think negotiated the agreement between Google and Apple for the 9.5 billion.   Does anyone here think that Google wanted to pay Apple 9.5 billion to be the default search on Apples platforms?   You would have to be an idiot to think anyone would want to pay that much to become the default on Apples platform. 

    Don't kid yourself, Apple was in full control, and knew that they had Google by the balls, so Apple could leverage their platform, and make Google pay 9.5 billion to be the default on Apples platforms, which doesn't look good for Apple.   Especially since Apple has antitrust cases as well.
    Of course. It's a contract. Willing seller willing buyer; they agreed on a price that each thought fair from their view. These are big boys; neither have stronger bargaining positions that can't be balanced by money. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 11
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,467member
    mr lizard said:
    Does anyone here think that Google wanted to pay Apple 9.5 billion to be the default search on Apples platforms?   You would have to be an idiot to think anyone would want to pay that much to become the default on Apples platform. 
    So why did they? If Google was so sure they didn’t need to be the default, and that customers would wilfully choose to set them as the default, then they wouldn’t have paid it. 

    They obviously felt that in order to maintain their search traffic from iPhone users, they needed to pay up. User choice alone wasn’t enough. 

    In fact it’s so important for them to keep that traffic, that they paid an eye watering nine point five billion dollars to make sure no other search providers became the default. 
    Neither Google nor Apple has EVER commented on what Google might be paying for the default search position. "Rumor has it" is as firm as it gets. You really don't know what was paid. Could be half that amount for all anyone knows outside of the two players themselves.  
  • Reply 9 of 11
    gatorguy said:
    mr lizard said:
    Does anyone here think that Google wanted to pay Apple 9.5 billion to be the default search on Apples platforms?   You would have to be an idiot to think anyone would want to pay that much to become the default on Apples platform. 
    So why did they? If Google was so sure they didn’t need to be the default, and that customers would wilfully choose to set them as the default, then they wouldn’t have paid it. 

    They obviously felt that in order to maintain their search traffic from iPhone users, they needed to pay up. User choice alone wasn’t enough. 

    In fact it’s so important for them to keep that traffic, that they paid an eye watering nine point five billion dollars to make sure no other search providers became the default. 
    Neither Google nor Apple has EVER commented on what Google might be paying for the default search position. "Rumor has it" is as firm as it gets. You really don't know what was paid. Could be half that amount for all anyone knows outside of the two players themselves.  
    Missing the point. The amount isn’t really relevant. Point is Google felt the need to pay to remain the default option. See the post I was replying to for the context. 
    viclauyycwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 11
    BeatsBeats Posts: 3,073member
    Here is an Apple news story you won't read on Apple Insider:
    Apple is lobbying AGAINST a bill aimed at stopping forced labor in China. They wouldn't want to upset the Chinese government over a little thing like forced labor.
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technology/apple-is-lobbying-against-a-bill-aimed-at-stopping-forced-labor-in-china/ar-BB1bdeDL

    Haha someone frame this comment it's too ironic!
    williamlondon
  • Reply 11 of 11
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,467member
    mr lizard said:
    gatorguy said:
    mr lizard said:
    Does anyone here think that Google wanted to pay Apple 9.5 billion to be the default search on Apples platforms?   You would have to be an idiot to think anyone would want to pay that much to become the default on Apples platform. 
    So why did they? If Google was so sure they didn’t need to be the default, and that customers would wilfully choose to set them as the default, then they wouldn’t have paid it. 

    They obviously felt that in order to maintain their search traffic from iPhone users, they needed to pay up. User choice alone wasn’t enough. 

    In fact it’s so important for them to keep that traffic, that they paid an eye watering nine point five billion dollars to make sure no other search providers became the default. 
    Neither Google nor Apple has EVER commented on what Google might be paying for the default search position. "Rumor has it" is as firm as it gets. You really don't know what was paid. Could be half that amount for all anyone knows outside of the two players themselves.  
    Missing the point. The amount isn’t really relevant. Point is Google felt the need to pay to remain the default option. See the post I was replying to for the context. 
    I wasn't missing the point at all. Apple wanted payment for a default search position. Google was the one Apple chose, and according to Tim Cook it was because Google Search was the best engine. Whether he was being forthright or not it wasn't Google approaching Apple, on their knees with bank account in hand. For all anyone knows Microsoft may have been willing to offer even more than Google but Apple preferred quality over dollars.

    I think it might be you missing the point. 
    edited November 2020
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