Google submits further concessions in bid to avoid EU antitrust fine

Google submits further concessions in bid to avoid EU antitrust fine

Summary: New proposals were submitted as the search giant aims to avoid a $5 billion fine.

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TOPICS: Google, EU
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Google has submitted new concessions to the European Commission with the aim of avoiding an antitrust fine of up to $5 billion.

The new proposals, confirmed by the Commission on Monday to the Associated Press, will aim to resolve differences between the company and the 28 member state bloc, amid calls that Google is stifling competition in the region.

The Commission reportedly denied to comment on the new submission, but said it was assessing it. 

The Europeans earlier this year warned that should Google fail to resolve its alleged anticompetitive practices, it could face a partial block of its business in the region.

Weeks later, unhappy with the submitted proposal, which outline four main areas of concern, the EU rejected the proposals as "not enough."

"Google has to decide whether it improves the planned solutions it presented," EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said. Meanwhile, Google's senior vice president and general counsel Kent Walker said in a blog post just days prior that he thought the company "did a pretty good job" in addressing the Commission's concerns.

The search giant currently has close to 90 percent of the share market. The EU has been probing the firm for three years to determine whether or not it has favored its own services, thus boosting its own market share in advertising and search results.

A final decision on whether Google breached EU antitrust law, which comes with a stiff financial penalty of up to 10 percent of a company's global annual revenue, is expected before the end of the year.

Topics: Google, EU

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14 comments
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  • Keep It Up EU!

    Make them keep adding concessions! You know they are doing other things people would not approve of, they just haven't been caught doing it yet.
    rmark@...
    • Since you seem to know what they are, list them.

      I'll even grant some questionable privacy operations.
      jessepollard
  • A five dollar fine

    This is literally pocket change to Google. The corporation has saved more than that just through their deliberate and outrageous tax-avoidance practices.

    If this was Microsoft the EU, arguably the most bloated, corrupt, undemocratic and unaccountable institution in the history of human civilisation, would under lobbying pressure by Google and its glove puppets be heavily penalised -- e.g. as we saw in the ridiculous EU case against Internet Explorer which ended in forcing Microsoft to display every Windows user a huge adverts for rival brands, all of which were readily available to download for free from the web anyway. All along, Google pretended to be representing the independent voice of mankind, then immediately after success launched its own web browser.
    Tim Acheson
    • Microsoft was already a declared monopoly carrying out illegal actions.

      Google can't even be a monopoly as it cannot control other search engines, nor how they enter the market.

      They just have to do as good a job of search.
      jessepollard
  • The EU needs to tackle Google on privacy, too

    This is taking too long.
    Tim Acheson
    • That is about the ONLY thing you can accuse Google of.

      Nothing else even makes sense.
      jessepollard
  • the EC should back off

    and allow Google and indirectly FOSS to flourish in EU!
    Tortuos interference on behalf of the M$ and Apple against the market leader should be stopped!
    LlNUX Geek
    • The hypocrisy of Google fanboys

      "interference on behalf of the M$ and Apple against the market leader should be stopped!"

      But not when it's on behalf of Google and its bankrolled glove puppets (e.g. Mozilla), as has historically always been the case. Google is getting nothing more and nothing less than a taste of its own medicine.

      There's an old proverb: "People who live in glass houses, should not throw stones."
      Tim Acheson
      • You will have to actually show the interference.

        So far, only MS has been shown to be causing interference.

        Every objection to Google has been traced back to MS in one form or another.

        No objections to MS activities have been traced to Google, so if you know of them - list them.
        jessepollard
        • So far, only MS has been shown to be causing interference.

          How about some links to verified references?
          jnowski
  • Juristiction

    That's odd. I thought Google only recognised the authority of the US courts?
    Meanwhile, why do the EU allow Apple to get around the micro USB standard for phone chargers. I know they sell an adapter, but it costs £15 rather than being included in the box (with the phone).
    DJL64
  • I don't really think

    anyone is holding the proverbial gun to the heads of E.U. citizens. Are they not capable of typing "Bing" or "Yahoo"? For that matter, do they not have the intellectual ability to understand how to "Set xyz as my default search engine" ?

    Maybe Google ought to simply run some TV ads showing how to use a browser.... any browser.
    ccs9623
  • BTW

    Isn't the "European Commission" a monopoly? Kettle, meet Pot.
    ccs9623
  • EU

    Tim Acheson, wow!
    "EU, arguably the most bloated, corrupt, undemocratic and unaccountable institution in the history of human civilisation,"

    I think you need to brush up on your knowledge of history, the present world and how the EU works. I have to put it strongly, but I think you have little idea...
    DAS01