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Microsoft unhappy with Google DoubleClick marriage

Jilted lover labels deal anti-competitive

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Microsoft is calling for regulator action to stop Google and DoubleClick merging, saying the deal would be anti-competitive if it went through.

The software giant's general counsel Brad Smith, who has acted for Microsoft in various anti-competition cases, told Reuters: "This proposed acquisition raises serious competition and privacy concerns. We think this merger deserves close scrutiny from regulatory authorities to ensure a competitive online advertising market."

Smith said Microsoft had not talked to regulators, but had talked to other companies.

According to spokespeople, AT&T is also concerned the deal would put Google in a dominant position in online advertising.

But Google CEO Eric Schmidt told the New York Times that Microsoft's claims were untrue. He said it was easy for businesses to switch to rival providers and that other issues would be debated with regulators as the deal went through.

Microsoft was reportedly in the bidding to buy DoubleClick, but was beaten by Google. ®

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