As previously reported, the EU has finally released documents clearly stating its concerns with Google’s competitive practices and listing, for the first time, Google’s actual proposals for settlement.
Ahead of the release, the FairSearch Coalition (a group of Google competitors – including chief rival Microsoft – hellbent on seeing Google’s business regulated by governments) issued a statement indicating it would likely have more suggestions for how Google could go beyond its proposals to make things better for its competitors. Now, the group has put out another statement.
Thomas Vinje, counsel and spokesman for FairSearch Europe had this to say:
“FairSearch applauds the Commission for laying out a clear and compelling case that Google is abusing its dominant position by giving its own products preferential treatment in search results. This is an important conclusion that must lead to meaningful remedies. We have always said that the best remedy for consumers and innovation would be to require Google to apply the same policy to search results for its own products as it does to all others.”
“However, Google’s proposed commitments appear to fall short of ending the preferential treatment at the heart of the Commission’s case based on formal complaints from 17 companies. Google’s own screen shots in its proposal (see p. 30) shows it seeks approval to continue preferential treatment for its own products. We will study the proposal in detail and offer an empirical analysis based on actual tests.”
Page 30? Okay, let’s take a look:
Look at that. Google Shopping results right at the top for a search for “dslr camera”. Perhaps they should be doing it the way FairSearch member Microsoft does it:
Oh, wait a minute.
It’s almost as if a search engine offering its own shopping results for product queries is the industry standard: