Google has been fined by the European Commission (EC) for effectively being, by far, the best search engine provider on the internet.
The European Commission announced plans on 18 July to fine Google a record $5bn. The allegations supporting the fine are of unfair competition and restriction of users’ access to competitor’s search engines.
However the investigation and subsequent fine have come about in response primarily to complaints made by lobby group FairSearch, which consists almost entirely of Google’s competitors.
Is Google’s EU fine a FairSearch win?
FairSearch has been on Google’s back since its inception in 2010, consisting of companies such as TripAdvisor, Oracle, Expedia and until recently Microsoft; all of whom Google compete with directly.
The lobby group regularly causes trouble for Google, is responsible for most of Google’s legal troubles in recent years and they write new reports every few days detailing how Google is allegedly restricting the choice of its users, disregarding privacy laws and many other topics.
These allegations are the result of bitter jealousy by the firms that make up FairSearch, and the latest attack on a company that has simply out-performed them in every way.
After all, Google wouldn’t be as successful if it wasn’t the best in the market.
Google will shrug off this latest attack and continue its dominance of the search engine world, while its competitors continue to struggle and fight over the scraps of the market that Google has yet to dominate.
Why did Google get fined?
The EC had taken issue with Google forcing manufacturers to pre-install Google Search and Google Chrome apps on devices that run on Android.
The EU argued that this was a violation of antitrust rules, claiming that Google was using its power to unfairly stop its competitors from operating to justify this record fine.
Google now has 90 days to either halt this anti-competitive practices or seek a delay of the order while it appeals the EC decision.
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