European Union fines Google $2.7 billion for abusing search monopoly


European Union fines Google $2.7 billion for abusing search monopoly

Since the beginning of each abuse, Google's comparison shopping service has increased its traffic 45-fold in the United Kingdom, 35-fold in Germany, 19-fold in France, 29-fold in the Netherlands, 17-fold in Spain and 14-fold in Italy.

The penalty payment for failure to comply would amount to about AUD$15.8 million a day based on Alphabet's 2016 turnover of AUD$119 billion.

Google has been slapped with a record €2.4bn fine by the European Commission for abusing its search engine dominance in EU countries to promote its own shopping comparison service to the top of search results, while demoting those of competitors.

In its findings, the European Commission found that Google had breached anti-competitiveness laws and distorted the market and ordered the tech giant to amend its ways in 90 days or face further penalties. Vestager said that they studied 1.2 billion search inquires before they reached their decision that Google was unfairly manipulating results. We see this as misguided given that, in our view, Google should (and must) continually improve its offerings if it is to provide consumers and advertisers more useful features. To push its own product ahead of competition.

We have been following this case at TAI, as well as a slew of other European Union "regulatory" assaults on USA tech companies, for some time. Google made a decision to give preference to Google Shopping offerings in search engine results to gain traction with customers.

"When you shop online, you want to find the products you are looking for quickly and easily".

The European Union also said that when people were searching on Google for various products, the results would boldly feature the company's own price comparison. "We respectfully disagree with the conclusions announced today", a Google spokesperson said. "We will review the Commission's decision in detail as we consider an appeal, and we look forward to continuing to make our case", the statement continued. "But at a high level, our instinct is that the EC's action could create a pro-Google, circle-the-wagons mindset among Team Trump - the idea being that Trump isn't necessarily a huge fan of Google, but it is an American champion company whose principal regulator should be the USA not the EC". But that isn't the case in Europe, where governments have taken the lead to ostensibly open up businesses like internet search engines. This isn't necessarily wrong, but it shows that the EC values a fair market more than good products. Oracle, Yelp and others reportedly sent Vestager a letter this week saying they "have watched Google undermine competition in the United States and overseas".

It is also investigating the company's ad placing service, AdSense.