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September 19, 2012

Google, Facebook, Yahoo and Amazon launch new lobbying group

Some of the biggest internet giants and several other companies are launching the Internet Association this week to address internet federal regulations.

By Tineka Smith

Member companies of the lobbying group also include LinkedIn, AOL, eBay, Expedia, IAC, Monster Worldwide, Rackspace, salesforce.com, TripAdvisor and Zynga.

According to a statement by the collaborative group, the Internet Association seeks to represent "the interests of America’s leading Internet companies and their global community of users."

The lobbying group, which launches Wednesday, comes in the wake of big internet companies increasing their spending on federal lobbying.

"A free and innovative Internet is vital to our nation’s economic growth," said Michael Beckerman, President and CEO of the Internet Association. "These companies are all fierce competitors in the market place, but they recognize the Internet needs a unified voice in Washington. They understand the future of the Internet is at stake and that we must work together to protect it."

The Internet Association’s aims to accomplish three goals: "protecting internet freedom; fostering innovation and economic growth; and empowering users."

The lobbying group says it wants to ensure leaders are educated on the impact the internet and internet companies can have on freedom and economic growth.

"It is the Internet’s decentralized and open model that has unleashed unprecedented entrepreneurialism, creativity and innovation.

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Policymakers must understand that the preservation of that freedom is essential to the vitality of the Internet itself and the resulting economic prosperity."

Reuters reports that Google spent $3.9m this year on online privacy and immigration legislation followed by Facebook with $960,000, Amazon with $690,000 and Ebay with $400,600.

Beckerman says it is important for the internet to be represented in Washington.

"The internet is the greatest engine for economic growth and prosperity the world has ever known," he said. "The Internet must have a voice in Washington."

Please follow this author on Twitter @Tineka_S or comment below.

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