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Barry Lynn, a scholar who wrote a critical assessment of Google that was posted on a think tank’s website, reportedly said the piece cost him and his team their jobs due to pressure from the tech giant.

Lynn’s article — which was briefly removed from New America’s site — praised the decision by European antitrust regulators to fine Google $2.7 billion, the New York Times reported.

But the article reportedly irked Google’s executive chairman, Eric Schmidt, and he voiced his concern to New America’s president, Anne-Marie Slaughter.

Slaughter called the writer to her office, days after the article was published, and informed him that “the time has come for Open Markets and New America to part ways.” Open Markets was the program that Lynn headed at New America.

The Times said it reviewed an email from Slaughter, where she claimed the decision was not “based on the content of your work.” She reportedly accused the writer of “imperiling the institution as a whole.”

The Times reported that Slaughter posted on Twitter that Lynn’s story was “false,” but did not cite any errors.

Lynn said in an interview that Slaughter bowed to pressure from Google and Schmidt, whose family foundation helped financially support the think tank.

Google, through a spokeswoman, denied Lynn’s charge, saying in a statement that the company backs a lot of think tanks and while the company “sometimes respectfully” disagrees, “we respect each group’s independence, personnel decisions and policy perspectives.”

The think tank also denied any influence by Schmidt or Google.

Lynn, in the meantime, started his own nonprofit called Citizens Against Monopoly.  The site said it is “going to make sure Google doesn’t get away with this.”



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