back to article Antitrust incoming? Google hit by EU complaint, FCC filing

Shopping comparison site Foundem this week fired the opening shots in the coming Google antitrust battle, with a complaint to the European Commission and a filing with the US Federal Communications Commission accusing Google of posing "an immediate threat to competition and innovation." The US filing is in response to the FCC's …

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  1. petur
    Thumb Down

    pathetic

    Try MapQuest and try Google Maps. You'll see which one is actually usable and people like to use. I used to use MapQuest all the time until I discovered Google Maps. Didn't look back.

  2. Phil 57
    Megaphone

    Shock Horror!

    ..Google uses its monopoly on Search to push its other services!! Film at 11!

  3. Gulfie
    Flame

    Bring it on

    Whilst I wouldn'd dispute other's assertions that Google's services are excellent I would seek to remind them that many good services have withered and died due to insufficient marketing, something Google doesn't do in half measures.

    If you control the world's #1 search engine and use it to promote your own products ahead of paid advertising for your rivals... it may be legal but sooner or later Google were always (if successful) going to end up being accused of antitrust.

    All of their services are free (and the more of them you use, the better the experience, in exchange for all your innermost secrets of course), and have no doubt contributed to the demise of numerous free and charging equivalents. Their dominance of searchvertising gives them deep, deep pockets with which to expand into new territory without concern as to if the new service is sustainable in any normal sense of the word. More money than any venture capitalist could dream of having in his fund.

    In many ways I think their behaviour now is much worse than Microsoft's, simply because of the breadth of their offerings, all paid for by searchvertising, and their ambitions to be present at every key point of the hardware and software chain. The eventual result will be an irreversible lock-in - Google becomes the internet (or at least all of its services worth mentioning), and the internet becomes Google, as its financial might allows it to best any company in its path.

    Google has, is, and will continue, to distort who can afford to offer services on the internet - let alone make money from them. It is time to break the company up and attempt to redress the balance, before all everybody else is left with is the long tail of the internet service business - and we know how profitable the long tail is, don't we?

    1. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects 1
      Unhappy

      Who would use a Microsoft search engine?

      I can't even imagine newbies sticking with them long.

      But the way the world turns is rather incredible. You hope for the best then find out the banks have been screwing everybody in the kitchen sink.

      I remember the disbelief the amateur Microsoft helpsites in ASAP being dumbfounded when the US government got into bed with one of the countries worst offenders turned gamekeeper.

      So there is no knowing what political military and security whatnots are going to come out of the woods over this. Or worm deeper into it.

  4. Bilgepipe
    Gates Horns

    Another Microsoft Playing Field

    Much as I deplore what Google appear to be doing, once again we see Microsoft sneaking around in the shadows pulling strings: backing lobbyists in Brussels? They just can't bring (bing?) themselves to compete fairly under any circumstances, because they know as well as all of us that they would fail. No-one wants to use Bing, so they start sabotaging the competition instead.

    Having said I can understand the complaint against Google. People are calling them the new Microsoft and I'm beginning to see why - neither can play fair and let their products compete for themselves.

    We need good/evil Google icons. I'll use Bill for now.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Down

      Yes they have so much pulll in Brussel...

      They have so much they decided to have themselves brought before the court.

  5. alistair millington
    Jobs Horns

    Google are evil

    The nexus one gave away their real agenda, let everyone do the work to perfect it, then do their own thing on all that hard work. (Android done by all the other companies and then release their own) Or their new facebook clone suddenly released.

    "Creepware" is a great word for it and if they do go into property and finance, or jobs it will be the death of many of the sites out there. which at first might not be a bad thing, but then as the UK knows all to well with BT, the post office, the NHS. Once you are down to one major player and a completely shite regulator (Take your pick of the quangos) You are stuffed for decades.

    Jobs because somebody with big pockets and a big name has come out the closet and said google are evil. Though with horns because he to is an egotistical reign grabbing maniac that wants everything his way.

  6. JRallo
    Flame

    Bing?

    http://www.bing.com/search?q=map&go=&form=QBLH

    Google Maps is number one for Microsoft...

    http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=map&toggle=1&cop=mss&ei=UTF-8&fr=yfp-t-701

    Second for yahoo (and yahoo's maps is first)

    I have to second petur's comment... and that mapquest has gotten me lost more times than google did for pretty easy searches (state parks, national monuments etc)

    Google gives away its services (for the most part.) These people (I read as SEOs) are complaining because their results aren't at the top of the list.

    1. Gulfie
      FAIL

      Re: Complaining

      I'm complaining because the choice of services is reducing and the number one choice invades my privacy too much.

      I'm also complaining because Google's overwhelming might makes it nigh on impossible for start-ups to compete in any space where Google is established. They have to compete with bottomless R&D pockets even before they start to consider how to promote their services.

  7. Firefox Russ
    Paris Hilton

    I'm with the EU

    "The difference between “do no Evil..” Google and Microsoft is, MS are a damn sight less hypocritical about their monopoly postion. And abuse thereof.

    If the simple fact that “Google is rapidly increasing how much it spends on lobbying in the United States..” doesnt tell you anything, I dont know what else will – ok Google fanboys, you can now go back to your Google searches for everything, Your GMail with targeted ads based on the content of your mails and put your head back under the pillow. For the rest of us, I am sure we can agree that some scrutiny of a company which has basically won control of the internet, while gaining a very, very large amount of personal users data and their surfing habits, is entirely overdue.

    Or, maybe, as the Google CEO (Eric Schmidt) himself says, “”If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place..” – unless of course, that knowledge is personal details of his, obtained by CNET Journalists only via Google searches. Google blacklisted CNET for about a year over this, then again, they really do have to the power to be both evil and hypocritical, whenever it suits. The public have somewhat less choice in blacklisting which Information Google collects from them.

    However, Google only use the info they have collected on YOU to sell ads, dont they? No problem there, then."

    About time Google where dropped a peg or two.

    Paris because I wish I was there.

  8. John Riddoch
    Grenade

    search for "email"

    Try email as a search term:

    Google - Hotmail 1st, Gmail 2nd.

    Yahoo! - Yahoo! mail 1st, Hotmail 2nd, Gmail 3rd

    Bing - Wikipedia 1st, outitgoes.com (who???) 2nd, Samaritans 3rd (!!!!), Hotmail 4th, Gmail 7th.

    If anything, Yahoo! stands out as the self-referring people, Bing just looks weird, presumably skewed by whoever is paying MS to be top of the listing.

    1. ShadowedOne
      FAIL

      Search for 'email'

      Apparently you failed to notice the sponsored links on Google.

      1st link: proginet/saas

      2nd link: Gmail

      3rd link (1st non-sponsored): Hotmail

      4th link (2nd non-sponsored): Gmail

  9. JShel
    WTF?

    Just watch your screen

    Plenty of the posters are citing Yahoo! and Bing showing preference for their own products, but that is just the tip of it.

    Anyone remember the week the Nexus was announced? Were there any sites you went to that serves Google display ads that DIDN'T have ads for the Nexus on them? I only found it mildly annoying until I searched, then went to a site looking for care of bamboo plants, and there were Google served text and display ads for all sorts of plant care junk - AND the Nexus!

    After that I was conscious of every one of their ads that showed up. Without fail if a site had display ads, at least one of them was Nexus regardless of the subject of the site. Became a bit of a challenge for me to find a topic on the web that was not deemed Nexus ad worthy.

    Side note - with the rise of the Google apologists here, can we have an official designation for them? My vote is for Googleooids

  10. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    one word.

    robots.txt.

    If you feel that Google is not playing fair, DON'T PLAY WITH Google. It's as easy as that.

  11. Steven Knox

    Break Up

    "So how long before somebody says 'break-up'?"

    Well, you just did. As I recall, people said that a lot about a certain other tech company*, but it never came to pass.

    * Now that I think about it, make that two certain other tech companies.

    <- Error 404: File yawn_48.png not found.

  12. wsm

    More to come

    Some Google executives could be headed to prison:

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/sns-ap-eu-italy-google-trial,0,1564059.story

  13. Mike Gravgaard
    Pint

    Bing

    The thing is if you look at the two big search engines Google and Bing... Google is more accurate at searches, Bing is just rubbish - if you have all day you could possibly use Bing if you were also masochist but Google is quite accurate especially if you use a decent search string and will be relevant search higher in the list.

    Yahoo has basically given up and turning it front page into a Bing portal.

    The thing is this is typical Microsoft; make a product which is rubbish and try pushing it against the competition - the thing is Google is good at search; Microsoft isn't; Microsoft only does well in markets it controls (i.e. Windows and Office) and they are clearly pulling the strings on this one to try and get their way.

    I would like to see competition to Google but I don't think Microsoft are the ones which will provide it especially if this is the best they can give. I think it will be a new search engine from say another university startup like Google was.

    Mike

  14. Steve Roper
    Headmaster

    "Shivaun" Raff?

    Are you sure that's how the name is spelt? The Gaelic feminine name Siobhan is pronounced "Shivaun", and if you spoke to her over the phone it's understandable that you'd write it as it sounds.

    I know because I came a cropper with that name in one of my IT classes in 2001 - when I called the roll, I pronounced "Siobhan" as "see-ob-han" and got roundly corrected by the student in question as to its correct pronunciation!

    Gotta love Gaelic spelling. It's as bad as French! :)

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