Opposed a company Google claims a group of prosecutors, led by Ken Paxton of Texas, that the partnership on buying ads with Facebook was non-competitive.
And in one PostingsAdam Cohen, director of economic policy at Google, described the lawsuit from 10 states led by Republicans as misleading.
The post represents the most comprehensive response yet from Google to the lawsuit, and it is also the only one calling Facebook a co-conspirator, even though it did not mention Facebook as an accused.
The post came after article It was published by The New York Times describing more details of the alleged partnership, citing an unedited draft of the complaint.
According to that version of the complaint as described by The Times, a Google executive saw an existential threat in Facebook’s 2017 announcement that it was testing the transition to ad space.
Facebook had been considering a project to buy ads that would allow publishers to circumvent dependence on Google’s platforms.
That project ended when the two companies reached an agreement in 2018 that Facebook would partner with Google’s Open Bidding project, which allows the exchange of competing ads with their own offers, but takes fees from winning offers.
That agreement was unlike others that were offered to the coalition partners, according to the members the Times interviewed.
It is alleged that Google has given Facebook more time to serve ads than other members of the alliance.
Google is also alleged to have offered Facebook more ideas about who would be the recipient of ads and a guaranteed profit rate for the offers.
The documents showed that the two parties agreed to cooperate and assist each other in the event that the agreement was investigated for competition-related reasons.
In the post responding to these allegations, Cohen defended Open Bidding as a tool that benefits publishers.
Cohen wrote that Open Bidding addresses some bidding issues, such as slow loading pages, and that offers are still a growing market, citing the 2019 eMarketer report.
Cohen noted that Google’s agreement with Facebook was widely reported at the time, and said: It allows Facebook and advertisers to participate in Open Bidding.
Cohen wrote that the agreement does not prevent Facebook from following bids and continues to require the company and its ad network to bid for the highest bid.
He also said: Google’s fees to advertisers are lower than the industry average, and that there is a lot of competition in this area.
A Facebook spokesperson said in a statement: Such partnerships are common in the industry, and we have similar agreements with many other companies.
He added: Facebook continues to invest in these partnerships and create new partnerships, which help increase competition in ad auctions to achieve the best results for advertisers and publishers, and any suggestion that these types of agreements harm competition is unfounded.