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European Commission Widens Google Inquiry

Regulators look at two more antitrust complaints

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Google’s lawyers in Europe, who have been forced to deal with all sorts of investigations and inquiries over the past few years, have just had more obstacles dropped in their way.  A new report’s indicated that the European Commission will look into two antitrust complaints originating in Germany.

The complaints come from two publishers and one mapping company, and first surfaced quite a while ago.  But to recap: the publishers, which control a huge number of newspapers and magazines, feel Google favors its own properties in search results and should share some of the ad revenue other companies’ articles help generate.

The mapping firm, meanwhile, has argued that Google’s made it too difficult for other organizations to compete with its free products.

Anyway, James Kanter, who broke the story of the European Commission taking interest in the complaints, noted, "The German cases . . . will give a more European flavor to an investigation that so far has been dominated by complaints by companies that have received support from the U.S. software giant Microsoft."

It remains unknown when the probe might move forward (or officially turn up nothing).  Google maintains it’s done nothing wrong and says it will cooperate with the investigation.

European Commission Widens Google Inquiry
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  • Guest

    I am no lawyer but Google promoting thier own web properties when others are more popular and offering same thing could be against competition laws.

  • Guest

    “I am no lawyer but G. promoting thier own web properties when others are more popular and offering same thing could be against competition laws.”

    I doubt “G. promoting thier own web properties when others are more popular and offering same thing” is against competition laws over there. I don’t know the laws on the EU but I seriously doubt that’s against competition laws. The global, common anticompetitive problem that G. has is with their blatant abuse of their search and advertising monopoly over there. All searches go through them or most of them, which means you can’t prioritize your own properties cannibalizing other websites or small businesses. G. is no doubt anti competitive and will get in trouble over there. Even here in the US all the justice department has to do is just tell the judge to do a web search on G. and knock himself out. The evidence of anti competitive behavior is just too overwhelming. Open and shut case. G. is so stupid that their employees even admit to this behavior as if it was nothing wrong. They either do that or whine about Microsoft being behind the whole thing. G. needs to be intervened by the Justice Department here in the US and their top management prosecuted. They think they are above the law and violate it thinking everything can be resolved with money later on.

  • http://www.allafricatravel.com Graham Page

    Obviously the no lawyer guest above is also not a business person as it is common business practice to promote your own product ahead of any competition. If the European commission has a problem with that they should look at their own companies and their own policies first. There is nothing more anti-competitive than the ridiculous demand put on exporters to the European countries and increases the cost to the citizens of the exporting country too. The next time you buy something that has an E symbol on it you know you are paying for their standards even if you don’t need or want them. My message to the law makers is leave commerce alone and don’t bow to jealous companies who can’t make it on their own.

    • Guest

      “Obviously the no lawyer guest above is also not a business person as it is common business practice to promote your own product ahead of any competition.”

      Graham, you have no clue about the subject that is being discussed here. You might have a business but you don’t understand a thing about the anti-competition, bullying problems from these giant companies. This is not a Tupperware party business. We are talking here about the big boys. There are anti-competition laws so business people like yourself are protected from being bullied or forced out of business by the same companies you like to defend blindness. This isn’t about socialism or communism. You can’t let a dictator run wild and kill people. Why would you let Google kill businesses left and right with their abuse of dominance power? In the business world having the dominance Google has on search and on the advertising world isn’t illegal, but the abuse that these companies choose to exercise with that dominance IT IS. There are anti-competition laws for a reason. The business world doesn’t work the way you view it.

  • http://www.cdncc.com Guest

    Google isn’t anticompetitive, it just looks that way because microsoft and yahoo are so pitiful. How MS can remain such a failure with so many resources for so many years is astounding.

    This european inquiry is a witch hunt backed by the same sort of beurocrats who backed the bank and GM bailouts in north america, this witch hunt/anti capitalist work justifies bureaucrats high salaries and makes government more integral to everyone’s socialist life, just what the public sector unions want.