Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

Summary: Google is up against nine antitrust cases in the European Union - five more than we knew about previously.

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Reuters is reporting that the European Commission is investigating no less than nine antitrust complaints against Google in the EU, which is five more than we knew about previously.

"The Commission has nine formal complaints now. The new complaints come from small companies," says Reuters' anonymous source. A second source confirms that three of the five newly uncovered cases are on behalf of regulatory agencies, while the other two are "fresh."

It's certainly not good news for Google, which faces an FTC probe here in the US in addition to these complaints in the EU. But it's not necessarily any worse for Google either - several of these cases will likely cover the same issues, so one European Commission investigation can potentially shed light on all nine.

The overall goal is to clear up certain issues with Google's business practices, as smaller rivals accuse the search giant of suppressing their pages in results and stifling competition.

But an unfavorable ruling in Europe could result in a fine of up to 10% of Google's global turnover, as Intel and Microsoft well know thanks to their own run-ins with the European Commission.

As the antitrust pressure on Google mounts, all eyes are on chairman Eric Schmidt ahead of his Sept. 21st appearance in front of a US Senate subcommittee hearing. His testimony is undoubtedly going to set the tone for Google's legal battles ahead.

Topics: Enterprise Software, Google, Government, Government UK, Security

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19 comments
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  • Google will just pay off the right people in the EU

    as they do here in the states.

    Somebody wants a new boat or something.
    William Farrell
    • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

      @William Farrell
      I don't know where you live, but in the US and EU it's innocent until proven guilty.
      anono
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @anono
        Tell that to Casey Anthony The media made alot of people believe she is guity
        rparker009
    • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

      @William Farrell

      These complaints are bogus from search companies that are searchjacking Google results to steer traffic to their own search engines. I don't go to Google and type a query so that the top results take me to another search page. This practice if allowed will reduce the value of Google search results just so these leeches can make money to steer traffic their way. This is not a practice that should be protected by law and Google has every right to demote them in the page ranking.
      techadmin.cc@...
  • Google probably thinks that they could bribe everyone

    and that they're above the law. I'm hoping they're run across a honest politician who's actions speak louder than hollow words like "do no evil".
    iPad-awan
    • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

      @iPad-awan

      I get that impression from them too. But, the truth is no one is above the law. Not even Google.
      The one and only, Cylon Centurion
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @Cylon Centurion <br>What law are you referring to that Google has supposedly been convicted of breaking and isn't being punished for?
        anono
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @anono
        The patent laws. Android will end up costing a phone maker between $25 and $75 dollars in royalties to these companies and that is the best outcome possible for Android. Apple or another company could file for and get an injuction that keeps the phone makers from selling the phones at all.
        rmark@...
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @rmark@...
        1. If Google has to pay then they are being punished thus you are not answering my question.
        2. I don't think patent infringement is breaking the law (don't quote me), but if it is then you practically can't make a tech product without breaking the law.
        anono
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @anono

        Google pushes their weight around thinking they can get away with anything. Then when caught they simply say "Who, me?"
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

      @iPad-awan
      Google hasn't been convicted so I don't know what you are talking about. Quick reminder, it's innocent until proven guilty in the US and EU.
      anono
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @anono Actually Apple already has won its patent law suite and against HTC and can now file an injuction to keep HTC from selling any Android phones at all. Basically HTC is guilty of selling phones with an OS (Android) that violates Apples patents (and will likely be found to violate other patents including MS's). Oh wait, royalties are already paid to MS for each Android phone sold . . .
        rmark@...
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @rmark@...<br>If violation of patents is the law Google broke then is there a tech company that hasn't broken it. Last I checked, Apple had to pay Nokia $600 million and MS had to pay i4i $291 million for the same reason. I'm not an expert on patents, but I don't even think infringement is breaking the law. It's practically a fact that you can't make a tech product without stepping on someone else's patents.<br><br>As for HTC having to pay MS. We all know that MS has a large portfolio of patents as it's a rather old company. Newer companies with smaller portfolios will naturally have to pay to remain in business. While that's definitely a benefit MS has, it hasn't been enough to cover their lack of innovation of the last decade and I suspect it won't be in the future. The only products I can think of coming from MS over the last decade or so are the Kinect and WP7. I like the Kinect, but WP7 was a pain to use when I tried it.
        anono
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @rmark@... You clearly do not understand the process of getting that injunction. HTC is guilty of violating those patents, however, there are two separate court cases needed before an injunction is possible... One regarding the validity of the two patents and the other regarding the injunction itself (and possible damages). Injunctions against import are never guaranteed, and the case is generally that there is damages rather than an injunction.

        Also there's the matter of the 8 or so patents that Apple is infringing on that HTC now owns (via S3 purchase).
        snoop0x7b
  • Not to defend Google ... but ....

    ... so far, every complain I have read about is about some company complaining about Google not ranking them higher Or about Google blocking their attempts to alter the ranking artificially Or about their public pages showing up in search results.
    wackoae
    • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

      @wackoae Not correct. See the HTC vs Apple patent law suite or one of the many privacy law suites.
      rmark@...
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @rmark@...
        I don't think the complaints being referred to in this article are consumer complaints. They appear to be business complaints referring specifically to Google search engine.

        So while HTC has infringed on Apple patents (you conveniently left out that Apple has also been proven to infringe a patents from a company HTC bought), it's not actually relevant to the article.
        anono
      • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

        @rmark@... Is that a lawsuit against Google? No. Read the post before you write... I didn't see "HTC" in wackoae's post.
        snoop0x7b
  • RE: Google faces nine antitrust complaints in the EU

    In this case, we don't know the facts, so we shouldn't condemn either Google or the EU. Let us not judge the case in the media. However, many times, companies are sued simply because they make huge profits, and the only way to prevent them from providing a competing product or service, even if just temporarily, is to get an injunction and/or sue. This results in high legal costs, which just drives up the costs for consumers and makes lawyers rich. In this case, not knowing the facts, this whole thing just doesn't smell right to me. Still, it seems to me that these so-called legal wranglings are just part of doing business nowadays.
    Minervo