The California-based search engine giant is squabbling with the Washington-based software company over pressure from lawmakers and regulators over the extraordinary power the two tech firms wield over American life.
The two companies fought a public battle on Friday, as Microsoft was preparing to testify at a congressional hearing focused on the impact of tech companies on local news.
Microsoft President (Brad Smith) said Brad Smith in His testimony Written before the House Antitrust Subcommittee: The problems plaguing the press today are partly the result of a fundamental lack of competition in the search and advertising technology markets that Google controls.
Smith continued: This does not mean making a statement about whether Google has acted illegally, but as we learned directly from Microsoft’s experience two decades ago, when the company’s success leads to side effects that negatively affect the market and our society, the problem should not be ignored. This usually requires government action.
Before the hearing, Google criticized Microsoft, accusing it of making allegations that serve its own interests and reverting to aggressive anti-Google evidence.
Google’s senior vice president of global affairs, Kent Walker wrote in PostThis latest attack marks a return to old Microsoft practices.
He added: It is no coincidence that Microsoft’s new interest in attacking us comes on the heels of the SolarWinds attack and at a time when they allowed tens of thousands of their customers to be penetrated through key Microsoft vulnerabilities.
Microsoft and Google have taken opposing positions in recent weeks over an Australian law that requires tech giants to negotiate revenue sharing with news publishers.
Google threatened to withdraw from Australia, and Microsoft backed the legislation, saying its search engine, Bing, would fill the gap.
The concerns that led to the emergence of Australian law are now reverberating around the world, including in the halls of Congress.
Microsoft supported a bill that would give news publishers an antitrust waiver so they can collectively bargain the revenues against the tech giants.
Smith indicated that Microsoft itself is likely subject to the law, but said: The technology industry has an obligation to do more to support high-quality journalism.