FTC

Google reprimanded for YouTube Kids app showing inappropriate content

Google reprimanded for YouTube Kids app showing inappropriate content

Google's recent mobile app, YouTube Kids, a version of the popular video service that curates safe content for young children, has come under fire from two child and consumer advocacy groups claiming that the app is deceiving. The Center for Digital Democracy and the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood filed a complaint with the FTC, stating that "the app is rife with videos that would not meet anyone’s definition of 'family friendly.'" The complaint included evidence of video clips that had been found on YouTube Kids that were described as disturbing and/or harmful to young children.

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FTC chides Michigan for banning direct-to-consumer vehicle sales, like Tesla

FTC chides Michigan for banning direct-to-consumer vehicle sales, like Tesla

The FTC has come out defending auto manufacturer's right to direct-to-consumer sales. The regulatory agency claims this is much bigger than Tesla, which has been getting all the press from forgoing dealerships and selling its electic vehicles directly to consumers, aggravating conventional manufacturers. The FTC's latest post is a direct comment on Michigan's new, legislation which has yet to be passed.

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EU gearing up to formally accuse Google of antitrust violations

EU gearing up to formally accuse Google of antitrust violations

European regulators are ready to make a move and pounce on Google, formally accusing the search engine giant of violating European antitrust policies. E.U. regulators have been mulling over this case for a while now, and this new move will the the latest in a public threat to Googles business practices. At the heart of the antitrust case is Google's alleged use of its search engine to direct web users to its own products. Additionally, the E.U. investigation is looking into allegations that Google made it difficult for advertisers to move their ads to other platforms because Google was aggregating content from competitors in its search results.

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Advocacy group calls for FTC to investigate YouTube Kids

Advocacy group calls for FTC to investigate YouTube Kids

YouTube Kids is the new kid's content side of things for streaming video giant YouTube. The service is free and eliminates all the questionable videos that parents don’t want their kids to have access too. YouTube Kids only launched back in February, but it already has one children's advocacy group calling for an investigation by the FTC.

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AT&T loses bid to have FTC lawsuit dropped

AT&T loses bid to have FTC lawsuit dropped

AT&T’s attempt to have a lawsuit brought forth by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) dismissed has been swatted away. The FTC sued AT&T for throttling customers who had unlimited data plans late last year, saying AT&T was being deceitful in bringing unlimited plans that down-shifted the download speeds after a certain point. AT&T was attempting to use their classification as a common carrier for voice service as legal grounds for the dismissal. Judge Edward Chen of the US District Court in Northern California wasn’t having it.

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Google turns to GIFs (oh, and facts) to slam FTC snark

Google turns to GIFs (oh, and facts) to slam FTC snark

Weaponized GIFs are apparently the new way to make serious points more flippant online, with Google smacking back at News Corp. criticism that the search giant had made a habit of hanging around the White House. Google had been accused of chasing undue political influence, with the News Corp. owned Wall Street Journal suggesting it was sneaky maneuvering that saw Google escape FTC censure over activities contrary to the public interest. Key to the accusations was a count of the number of times Google had visited senior officials since President Obama took office.

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FTC hits back; Google investigation integrity questioned again

FTC hits back; Google investigation integrity questioned again

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is coming out against statements made last week by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), as well as new claims that Google had used its political ties to the Obama administration to obtain a favorable outcome in the FTC investigation into alleged anti-trust and unfair internet search practices. The FTC states that such claims are unfounded and undermine the integrity of its investigation, while the WSJ is giving weight to the idea that anti-trust investigation might not have had much integrity on the FTC's part at all.

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FTC launches new office for tech research and investigation

FTC launches new office for tech research and investigation

The FTC has formed a new research office called the Office of Technology Research and Investigation, and as you'd expect given its name, it focuses on technology and all of the issues that might arise surrounding it. The FTC is currently on the prowl for new hires that'll be joining the office, which it said will ultimately help it "protect consumers" in a world where technology is developing rapidly. This new office is a successor to the Mobile Technology Unit, which was formed a few years ago to tackle mobile-centric technological issues in particular.

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BMW settles with the FTC over restrictive Mini warranties

BMW settles with the FTC over restrictive Mini warranties

Consumer warranties can be tricky. They are ideally designed to protect the consumer, but are mostly written by companies to protect their own interests and profit margin. BMW's auto warranties were scrutinized by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) which lead to an official complaint from the FTC. BMW of North America is settling with the FTC over their administrative complaint that BMW's Mini car division restricted its customers freedom to choose after-market auto parts and individual repair garages over Mini's official dealerships. In order to avoid a possibly long and drawn out court battle against the regulatory agency, BMW decided to settle.

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FTC report: Google caused ‘real harm to consumers’

FTC report: Google caused ‘real harm to consumers’

A 160 page FTC report from a couple years ago has made the light of day through an open-records request, and in it we see Google held in a harsh, often damning light. The report reveals that it was recommended that the FTC sue Google over three of the Internet giant's practices, something that would have -- had it gone through -- ended up being one of the biggest antitrust cases since the similar suit against Microsoft in the 90s. Among other things, the report says Google both has and will harm consumers and innovation with some of its actions.

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