DOJ sues Google over ad practices, Ticketmaster takes the stand + LA26 founders | E1664 | Summary and Q&A

January 24, 2023
This Week in Startups
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DOJ sues Google over ad practices, Ticketmaster takes the stand + LA26 founders | E1664


The Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a lawsuit against Google, asking for the spin-off of its ad business. Ticketmaster also faced Congressional questioning regarding alleged anti-competitive practices. Startups like Gavalo and Hey Hire offer innovative solutions for digital gifting and hourly worker hiring, respectively.

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Key Insights

  • ๐Ÿ’— The DOJ's lawsuit against Google highlights the growing concerns surrounding the tech industry's monopolistic practices.
  • ๐Ÿคจ Ticketmaster's alleged anti-competitive measures have raised questions about the fairness of the ticketing industry and the need for alternative platforms.
  • ๐Ÿ’ Startups like Gavalo and Hey Hire are providing innovative solutions to improve the digital gifting experience and streamline the hiring of hourly workers.


hey everybody it is Tuesday on this weekend startups and I wish I could tell you that Jason was resting because as his adopted mother I keep trying to get him to do that but he's not he's on an airplane uh traveling for work of course so let's send him some good vibes and hope he heals up soon and doesn't make it worse for the show with some solo d... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: How does the DOJ lawsuit against Google affect the digital ad industry?

The DOJ's lawsuit seeks to break up Google's ad business, which would have a significant impact on the ad tech industry as a whole. Additionally, it would have implications for Google's parent company, Alphabet.

Q: What are the allegations against Ticketmaster regarding anti-competitive practices?

Ticketmaster is facing scrutiny for its alleged monopolistic control over the ticketing industry, which has led to unfair treatment for consumers and artists. The hearing in Congress aimed to address these issues and explore alternatives to Ticketmaster.

Q: What is Gavalo's approach to improving the digital gifting experience?

Gavalo offers a Shopify app that allows businesses to post job positions and attract local job seekers. It also provides a standardized profile creation process and facilitates instant communication between employers and job seekers.

Q: How does Hey Hire address the challenges of hiring hourly workers?

Hey Hire focuses on proximity and communication to address the hiring needs of businesses seeking hourly workers. By restricting job seekers to local candidates and providing instant communication channels, the platform streamlines the hiring process.


In this video, the host talks about the Department of Justice (DOJ) suing Google over its dominance in the digital ads market and the congressional hearing on Ticketmaster's alleged anti-competitive practices. The host also interviews founders from the Launch Accelerator program to discuss their businesses. Additionally, there is a segment featuring Age Tech Collaborative, which connects startups and investors in the aging technology space.

Questions & Answers

Q: What is the impact of the DOJ lawsuit against Google?

The lawsuit could have significant consequences for the ad tech industry if Google is forced to spin off its ads business. It would also pose a challenge for Alphabet, Google's parent company, as ads generated a significant portion of its revenue.

Q: How does Google dominate the digital ads market?

Google controls more than a quarter of the U.S. digital ads market and is the number one player in terms of market share. Its ad business makes up a large portion of its total revenue, and the lawsuit alleges that Google has engaged in anti-competitive behavior to maintain its dominance.

Q: What does the lawsuit accuse Google of?

The lawsuit claims that Google has corrupted competition in the ad tech industry by seizing control of various tools used by publishers, advertisers, and brokers. It alleges that Google has used anti-competitive and unlawful means to eliminate threats to its dominance.

Q: How does Google's behavior harm advertisers, publishers, and consumers?

According to the lawsuit, Google's dominance in the digital ads market harms advertisers and publishers by limiting competition and driving up prices. It also affects consumers as publishers make less money from advertisements, which could lead to more content being behind paywalls or alternative forms of monetization.

Q: What is the proposed remedy in the lawsuit?

The lawsuit calls for, at a minimum, the divestiture of Google's ad manager suite, which includes its publisher ad server and ad exchange. The remedy could also include additional structural changes to address the anti-competitive harm caused by Google's dominance in the digital ads market.

Q: What happened during the congressional hearing on Ticketmaster's anti-competitive practices?

The hearing focused on whether the lack of competition in the ticketing industry has harmed consumers and artists. It was revealed that Ticketmaster controls over 70% of the market for ticketing and live events, raising concerns about its monopoly power.

Q: How does Cavallo solve the problem of selling gift cards on Shopify?

Cavallo is a Shopify app that reinvents the digital gifting experience. It allows merchants to sell gift cards in a more seamless and user-friendly manner. It provides advanced analytics to track gift card redemptions and offers integrations with email providers to send reminder emails to gift card recipients.

Q: Why is it important for merchants to offer gift cards?

Offering gift cards can increase customer loyalty and average order value. With the ability to track redemptions and send reminder emails, merchants can ensure that gift cards are utilized and not left unused, which can be a liability for them.

Q: What is the significance of being a Shopify Plus certified app?

Being a Shopify Plus certified app means that Cavallo has met the requirements and standards set by Shopify for its premium, enterprise-level merchants. This certification shows that Cavallo is trustworthy and has the necessary features to meet the needs of larger businesses.

Q: How does Age Tech Collaborative support startups in the aging technology space?

Age Tech Collaborative provides support to startups by incubating them, investing in them, and connecting them with investors, test beds, and industry expertise. It aims to foster innovation in the aging technology sector and help startups succeed in this rapidly growing market.


The DOJ lawsuit against Google and the congressional hearing on Ticketmaster's practices highlight the ongoing concerns about anti-competitive behavior in the tech industry. These cases have implications not only for the companies involved but also for advertisers, publishers, and consumers. The startups featured in the Launch Accelerator program and Age Tech Collaborative are addressing significant market opportunities in digital gifting and aging technology. These sectors offer great potential for innovation and growth.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The DOJ has teamed up with eight states to sue Google, seeking the spin-off of its ad business due to alleged anti-competitive practices.

  • Ticketmaster was called before Congress to answer for its anti-competitive measures, and alternatives to the platform are being explored.

  • Gavalo is redefining the digital gifting experience through its Shopify app, improving communication between businesses and job seekers.

  • Hey Hire facilitates the hiring of hourly workers by connecting businesses with job seekers who are local and streamlining the application process.

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