Publishing/Writing: Insights, News, Intrigue

12/18/2010

Publishers Claim Google Stuffs Competition


Some powerful newspaper and magazine European publishers have filed complaints that Google has stopped acting simply as a search engine and has entered into direct competition with them by adding more and more of their own related content and ads on search pages (placed right next to the requested service data) and are not properly compensating or ranking companies that offer similar services.

Looks like Google wants to expand but doesn’t know how with the proper online etiquette…and may be stepping on some toes…and that’s putting it politely!

I wouldn’t dare say that they are strong-arming the competition, trying to take over territories, taking without compensating and generally acting like 1930’s thugs and assholes.

The New York Times ran this pointed article by James Kanter:

European Antitrust Inquiry Into Google Is Broadened

BRUSSELS — The European Commission has widened its investigation into Google by taking on two German cases involving complaints from a powerful group of newspaper and magazine publishers and an online mapping company, officials said on Friday.

Joaquín Almunia, the European competition commissioner, announced a wide-ranging case against Google at the end of November, saying investigators would focus on whether the search engine company gave preferential treatment to its services when ranking search results, and whether it discriminated against competitors.

By taking over the German cases as well, Mr. Almunia will get access to additional evidence collected by authorities in Germany, where more than 80 percent of computer users rely on Google to search the Web.

The German cases also give a more European appearance to an investigation that so far has been dominated by complaints by companies that have received support from the software giant Microsoft.

Google said the decision was largely procedural because the European Commission takes over cases from member countries when there are overlapping issues.

“We continue to work cooperatively with the commission and national regulators, explaining many aspects of our business,” a Google spokesman, Al Verney, said. “There’s always going to be room for improvement, so we are working to address any concerns.”

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