New Complaints Filed By The EU Against Google

New Complaints Filed By The EU Against Google

by Gary Oldwood on 15 July 2016 · 1336 views

1 full New Complaints Filed By The EU Against Google

The "fight" between the European Union and Google continues unabated, as the European audit mechanisms now aim the US company’s activities in the field of advertising.

The European Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, filed a formal “Statement of Objections” accusing Google of abusive control in the area of digital advertising.

The complaint is aimed at AdSense, i.e. Google’s service that offers to other companies and organizations the ability to place their ads on third-party websites. A supplementary statement of objection that follows an existing complaint for monopolistic practices in the company’s online shopping services, has also been filed.

The problem, according to the European Commission, is the way in which Google defines its AdSense service rules. According to the EU, Google is abusing its power to prevent websites from showing ads of other advertising companies. This, according to the Commission, is behavior that violates the rules of fair competition.

"Google has come up with many innovative products that have made a difference to our lives. But that doesn't give Google the right to deny other companies the chance to compete and innovate. Today, we have further strengthened our case that Google has unduly favoured its own comparison shopping service in its general search result pages. It means consumers may not see the most relevant results to their search queries. We have also raised concerns that Google has hindered competition by limiting the ability of its competitors to place search adverts on third party websites, which stifles consumer choice and innovation", Commissioner Vestager stated.

Google denied the accuses of its practices being unfair, replying with the following comment:

"We believe that our innovations and product improvements have increased choice for European consumers and promote competition. We’ll examine the commission’s renewed cases and provide a detailed response in the coming weeks."

It is known that Google is already facing complaints by the EU, having to deal with a fine that can reach up to 10% of its annual revenues. That is, the fine could reach up to the amount of $7 billion. In the area of digital advertising, in the last quarter Google had a revenue of $19 billion, representing 90% of the company’s total revenue.

Last year, Google had dominated the online advertising market, with its revenue reaching $30 billion only in the US market, which translates to 64% of the total market, leaving Facebook behind, with a revenue of $8 billion.

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