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US: Freedom of speech saves Google from antitrust suit

 |  November 19, 2014

An antitrust lawsuit challenging Google’s search results was tossed late last week as a ruled that those results are protected by the First Amendment.

Reports say a San Francisco dismissed the claims against Google filed by tourism website CoastNews. The site, which launched the legal attack in June, argued that Google violated antitrust laws by not ranking CoastNews as high in its search results as Yahoo and Bing did.

The company sought $5 million in damages.

But California Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith ruled that Google’s search results are protected by the First Amendment and are considered free speech.

According to reports, the case is likely to discourage future lawsuits challenging low search result placements by Google.

But across the Atlantic, cases could meet a different fate. As Google continues to fight possible sanctions by the European Commission for allegedly unfair methods of displaying search results, experts note that because the EU does not have the equivalent to the US First Amendment right, similar lawsuits may prove more successful in Europe.

Full content: US News

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