back to article Google antitrust? Ask the one man who can (almost) answer

Outside of Google, no one really knows how the company makes its money. We know that most of Google's billions come from AdWords, its search advertising system. But no one really knows how AdWords works. By design, AdWords is a black box. If the world knew how it worked, Google says, unscrupulous advertisers would game the thing …


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  1. Ian Michael Gumby

    Given enough time...

    Eventually the US Government will get it right and with enough pressure they will be forced to investigate Google.

    1. Charles Manning

      On what grounds?

      They need to have at least slightly credible grounds to make allegations of anti-trust.

      Facebook might be a blessing in disguise since they're getting a reasonable, and growing, slice of online-ad revenue so clearly there is some competition in the industry.

      I guess at some level, they could force Google to do a Baby-bell and fragment into GMail, search, Android, etc and level the playing field by allow other players to bid for the ad business.

      But would that really work?

  2. James Woods

    well coming from yahoo

    Yahoo is just upset that it's a huge failure.

    Yahoo used to be what google is but it wanted to turn itself into a social media site and it's turned out to be a mistake.

    In my mind yahoo and google advertising 'adwords style' would be 50/50.

    However we know when it comes to sitting down at the computer that's a different story.

    In 1998 buying a hard drive meant you got rails, a cable, screws, a book, and a warranty card.

    In 2010 you buy a hard drive you get a book and a google cd.

    The anti-trust with google isn't ads, it's the entire system they have.

    You can take any so-called monopoly we've had in the world multiple it by 100 and still not understand how much of a monopoly has for search.

    It will never be brought down by any government because these mega-corps run government. Government is there to protect and serve them, not you.

    Why else is the government focusing it's power on seizing domains rather then closing the boarders. And I don't even mean physically closing them, I mean doing away with the benefits people have for coming here illegally like putting those in jail who grant in-state tutition to ILLEGAL aliens.

    It doesn't pay them to secure the boarders, it pays to work for mega-corp usa.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do know evil

    "By design, AdWords is a black box. If the world knew how it worked, Google says, unscrupulous advertisers would game the thing."

    Unscrupulous advertisers ARE gaming the thing. Their name? GOOGLE.

  4. Steven Knox

    "Legitimate Advertisers" is an Oxymoron, and...

    "The best we can do is ask Preston McAfee...Preston McAfee is Yahoo!'s chief economist. "

    Sure. Because when you want unbiased analysis, the best thing to do is ask a direct competitor -- someone with a vested interest in the outcome always gives you a straight answer.

  5. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Google is your Friend. Trust Me. He's a pretty straight sort of guy. [cough, cough]

    "By design, AdWords is a black box. If the world knew how it worked, Google says, unscrupulous advertisers would game the thing."

    Whereas today, would unscrupulous advisors be gaming Search Systems? They do however soon trigger a Real IntelAIgents Block for Sensitive Core CodedD Source for Future Imaginative Source Trials and XSSXXXXual Trails, which are Virtual Trials and Turing BetaTests for the Master Mind, with a Mind akin to your Own, Beautifully Exaggerated.

    "If the world knew how it worked..." That begs the question, "Who knows how the black box bit works?" .... :-):-0:-):-0

    Or are Google sitting on a mountainous pile of priceless information, and at a bit of a loss as to what to do with it for the Best, as IT makes Creates for the Google Complex, MegaMetaData Mills with Piles of Future Liquidity in the Stored Virtual Ammo Dumps/NEUKlearer HyperRadioProActive Arsenals ..... of Oft Searched Desires, and Passionately Overwhelmingly Wanton in XSSXXXXtremis.

  6. Tigra 07

    I just have to say...

    "Preston McAfee"?

    Graham Google, Michael Microsoft, Andy Apple, Ingrid IBM, Donald Daewoo, Betty Ford, Freddy Foxconn, Vera Volvo

    If only life had such irony!

    1. Rob Dobs

      I don't think he changed his name

      Henry Ford, John Deere, Michael Dell etc there are lots of companies that are named after surnames.

      Not too uncommon that someone with same surname would be working for a living.

      Now really ironic would be a Henry Ford who worked for Honda, Andy Apple working for M$, or a Preston McAfee who worked for Pandasoft.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nice one Reg!

    Really enjoyed this one - cheers :)

  8. Lewis Mettler 1

    if Yahoo is concerned

    If Yahoo is concerned about antitrust maybe they should insist that illegal antitrust activity from Microsoft (as determined by the federal courts) should actually cease before they do business with Microsoft.

    Yes, the federal courts did decide that commingling the code between IE and the OS was in fact illegal. Microsoft appealed that decision to the US Supreme Court and they refused to hear the case. So it is a legal certainty that Microsoft continues to violate the federal antitrust laws.

    Yet, the US DOJ says that illegal antitrust activity is okay if Microsoft is doing it. They approved it. They condoned it.

    And now Yahoo (and Microsoft) speak of antitrust? They really should clean their own kitchen before they invite guests over for dinner.

  9. Rob Dobs


    How could any business be dumb enough to drink this kool-aid?

    They are running the market, and at the same time continue to introduce new products in new markets on an almost constant basis.

    They will not stop ever on their own... the Google plan is to get you to use their free mail and search and advertising services, while they scan all your data (only with computers for keywords, not a live person as if that mattered). They will get all relevant key words associated with your business model, then create a cheaper competing product, and then use all the website and resources you usually access against you.

    Say you rent cars for living. Google will scan your employee emails, the corporate emails, search behavior, etc combine that all with the paid adwords,

    And then they mesh this review with their general database on the public at large.

    and now Google has great information on what kind of cars people rent, where the renting companies hold expos and internal meetings, what subscriptions they use to get information etc. Google can come in steal their best practices and good ideas, and start a new competing company with their billions, and buy only the best product that will sell for the most margin.

    Fast forward a few years, google owns the market, they have expanded their offering to take over the less profitable sectors as well. and the competition is dead or floundering.

    Why oh why would any business owner commit suicide and sign on with this awful organization is beyond me.

    I have given up hope on the general public being able to get the danger here, and don't think our government will wise up until long after it is too late.

    The only hope I have now is some rogue Google millionaire with a shred of conscience left will leak some of the formula and uber shady things going on behind the curtain.

    Of course all the cash, flextime and massages are helping keep the fools happy so slim chance on that.... besides you can't bank on the morality of someone who chose to go work for such a company to begin with.

  10. kain preacher

    NSA 2.0

    I can see it now . Google goes before judge .

    Judge: google you have been a very naughty boy.

    Google: but apparently not as naughty as you judge . I see your browsing history. Naked midget wrestling, donkey show , men who likes to have their nuts walked on by women in high heels and well we can say this out loud I'll just show you the pics. Does your wife know about your um well perverted desires .

    Judge: case dismissed .

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