October 1, 2013

European anti-trust case against Google likely to end after fresh proposals

The European Union’s long-running anti-trust case against Google, in which the search company was accused of using its dominant position in search to stifle competition, looks set to finally be resolved – though we may have to wait until Spring to learn the details. Reuters reports that Google has made new proposals, which the EU suggests […]

September 9, 2013

Google offering new concessions in EU antitrust case – but neither side saying what they are

The on-going saga of the EU’s anti-trust case against Google, accusing it of using its dominant position in search to block competition, continues with Google making fresh proposals to the Competition Commission.

Google’s initial response was to offer to:

  • clearly separate sponsored links from organic search results, and to link to rival search services
  • allow publishers to choose what content is included in Google’s various search results
  • allow website owners to sell advertising from competitor companies alongside Google ads
  • allow advertisers to manage search advertising campaigns across competing platforms …

After seeking feedback on the proposals from other interested parties (read: Microsoft and others who feel they are unfairly treated), the EU rejected them as not going far enough.

Reuters reports that Google has now offered further concessions, but neither Google nor the EU has yet revealed what these are.

October 15, 2012

Colorado Dem Rep cautions FTC to rethink antitrust suit against Google

U.S. Federal Trade Commission officials supposedly want to bring an antitrust case against Google due to complaints about it suppressing competition in the market, but Colorado Rep. Jared Polis cautioned the regulatory body in a letter last week that such a lawsuit would be a “woefully misguided step.” Many Internet businesses, such as Yelp and […]

April 19, 2016

Canada ends investigation into anti-competitive search and ad practices by Google

With imminent troubles looming in Europe, Canada just closed its three year investigation into anti-competitive practices involving Google’s search and advertising business (via The Verge). The country’s Competition Bureau ultimately “did not find sufficient evidence” that Google’s practices harmed local rivals.

September 20, 2013

Microsoft is David battling Google’s Goliath Monopoly, says outgoing CEO Ballmer

In what must surely win some kind of award for irony, Steve ‘dead man walking’ Ballmer repeated his call for Google to face greater scrutiny from competition authorities, describing the search giant as a “monopoly.”

Speaking at an analysts briefing yesterday (via The Verge), the outgoing Microsoft CEO responded to questions about Google’s plans to generate money from online services saying:

Google does it. They have this incredible, amazing, dare I say monopoly that we are the only person left on the planet trying to compete with. We’re the only guys in the world trying.”

Microsoft of course faced numerous anti-trust suits back in the heady days of its dominance of the PC industry, and always dismissed them with the view that consumers make their own choices.

Microsoft’s search service Bing has 17.9 percent of the US search market, a distant second to Google at 67 percent. The disparity is often greater internationally though Google does have competition from Yandex in Russia and Baidu in China.

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