The Justice Department has taken down publicly posted trial documents in the US v. Google case due to a disagreement about how files should be available online. Judge Amit Mehta will decide whether future online access to exhibits will be permitted. The Big Tech On Trial newsletter provided more details about the dispute, which arose during a discussion between the Justice Department and Google regarding the submission of evidence. Google’s attorneys mentioned that the Justice Department had been posting documents online, which Mehta was unaware of. Mehta stated that he doesn’t necessarily oppose the documents being posted and that the Justice Department offered to notify Google in advance. Google has chosen not to comment, and the Justice Department hasn’t responded to requests for comment. The page that previously hosted trial exhibits is currently offline, but an archived snapshot is still accessible. It is common for court documents to be posted online during trials, sometimes leading to unintended disclosures. The US v. Google case has been a battle for public access to the trial, which is viewed as a significant antitrust case. Google and other companies argue that the trial could expose sensitive financial information as the Justice Department makes its case against Google’s alleged monopoly in the search engine industry. The trial is not being broadcast remotely, except for an audio feed on the first day. The extent to which information will continue to be posted during the 10-week trial remains to be seen.
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