New Poll: Super Majority of Americans Believe Google Has Too Much Power; Want Search Engine Competition
Washington, D.C. — A new poll commissioned by American Economic Liberties Project and Fight Corporate Monopolies finds that 60% of Americans across party lines believe big tech giants like Google “have too much power in the market, which puts competitors at a disadvantage and hurts both smaller businesses and consumers.”
The survey, conducted by Data For Progress, was in the field while Google is in a federal courtroom defending itself in a trial initiated by the federal government which argues that the $1.8 trillion company illegally locks out its competitors in the search engine market.
Importantly, the poll found that a growing number of people have an appetite for an alternative search competitor. When asked whether they would be likely to try a new search engine theoretically introduced by Apple, 58 percent of respondents indicated they would. (Apple has publicly discussed working on a potential search engine competitor, though it has been stymied in its efforts to do so.)
The other key findings in this poll demonstrate that the tech monopoly’s search product has degraded in quality over time:
- 60% of respondents express concern about Google “handing of privacy and data”;
- 38% of respondents believe Google serves too many ads;
- 43% of people believe that Google ads are “mostly useless”;
- A plurality of respondents (46%) believe the government should do more to regulate Big Tech companies (like Google, Amazon, and Meta).
“The poll results demonstrate that the DOJ is fighting on behalf of a vast majority of the public that wants more competition and choices, but is being stopped by the monopolistic practices of Google,” said Faiz Shakir, Interim Executive Director of the American Economic Liberties Project. “It’s clear that the American people believe Google has too much power and they are open to alternatives.”
The poll’s results provide strong validation for the core arguments in the Department of Justice’s antitrust case. Given the prevailing understanding of the law, the government not only has to prove that Google’s market share qualifies it as a monopoly, but also show that it has used its dominant position to harm competition. In court last week, Google revealed that it pays Apple over $10 billion dollars annually to not only direct people to Google search when they are using an Apple iPhone and the Safari browser, but also that Google makes these annual payments to Apple on the condition that Apple does not build its own search engine. These multi-billion dollar payments from Google to Apple and other phone manufacturers and web browsers prevent others from launching their own search engines, directly harming competition and ultimately cementing Google’s monopoly.
The poll was conducted from September 13 to 14, 2023 via a survey of 1,227 likely voters nationally using web panel respondents. The sample was weighted to be representative of likely voters by age, gender, education, race, geography, and voting history.
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The American Economic Liberties Project works to ensure America’s system of commerce is structured to advance, rather than undermine, economic liberty, fair commerce, and a secure, inclusive democracy. Economic Liberties believes true economic liberty means entrepreneurs and businesses large and small succeed on the merits of their ideas and hard work; commerce empowers consumers, workers, farmers, and engineers instead of subjecting them to discrimination and abuse from financiers and monopolists; foreign trade arrangements support domestic security and democracy; and wealth is broadly distributed to support equitable political power.