back to article Microsoft-backed lobby group demands market test of Google's proposed 'search fix'

A Microsoft-backed lobby group is urging Brussels' competition chief Joaquin Almunia to open up Google's latest revised offer of a conciliatory package of tweaks to its search biz to the ad giant's rivals. Earlier this week, it was reported that the European Commission was closing in on a settlement deal with Google that would …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    WTF?

    Sod off, microsoft

    If we wanted your sorry excuse for a search site, we'd be using it. As is, even clueless joe sixpack actively changes his browser search engine from bing to google. No amount of bribery^wlobying will change that.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sod off, microsoft

      When rivals challenged Windows or Office dominance was it just because they weren't good enough or was there some other reason?

      Often it was subtle incompatibilities or a user base that was so used to Win+Office that they wouldn't even try anything else.

      With Google the problem is their search is biased to show their products and services. This is like Microsoft bundling IE and not letting people know there is a choice.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        FAIL

        Re: Sod off, microsoft

        Bzzzzt - wrong. To use Bing and IE you just use the stuff that came with the OS. To use Google you need to do a conscious choice, if you're using the browser bundled with the most used PC OS. You need to go to the site or even change the default search engine in IE. If you want to use another browser you also need to do a conscious choice and search and download it. You can more easily make a case for Bing being anti-competitive than Google.

        As for biased choice - I'd rather Google continues keeping link farms and Bing low in the search results. If Google sites are the most relevant, then why not show them first?

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: Sod off, microsoft

          "Bzzzzt - wrong. To use Bing and IE you just use the stuff that came with the OS. "

          Uh, if I buy an Android phone does it not default to using Google for search?

          The pro-Google lobby is out in full force today, looking at these comments. If Google's competitors can put pressure on to hold Google responsible for what they do, I'm fine with that. It's a good thing for us, citizens of the EU. It's only a bad thing if you have some football-supporter "my team" approach to Google.

          1. MrZoolook

            Re: Sod off, microsoft

            "Bzzzzt - wrong. To use Bing and IE you just use the stuff that came with the OS. "

            Uh, if I buy an Android phone does it not default to using Google for search?

            -----

            Uh, if you buy a Windows phone does it not default to using Bing for search?

            You sir, are a hypocrite.

            1. h4rm0ny

              Re: Sod off, microsoft

              >>"Uh, if you buy a Windows phone does it not default to using Bing for search? You sir, are a hypocrite."

              Really? Because I didn't say MS phones didn't. It was someone else that said how MS operating systems did and I pointed out that so did Google's. Now your logic fits better the person I replied to, fits them exactly in fact because they were the ones that criticised another for doing what their own 'team' did. So will you now turn on them and call them a hypocrite seeing as they are the ones who did what you accuse me of?

              Somehow I doubt it. I suspect your attacks are one direction only.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sod off, microsoft

      Indeed. Why should Brussels be allowed to make Google rubbish, just because Bing is...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Sod off, microsoft.. what about your browser selection screen you forgot about!

        When Microsoft broke the browser selection screen for 18 months with Windows 7 SP1, they were fined a relative small amount by the European Commission, Microsoft also promised to extend the 5 year duration by 18 months. How long is it until the original 5 years are up? What can/will the European Commission do to them if they don't extend by 18 months?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    MS

    If Bing wasn't so shit at finding things you might have a point.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      DuckDuckGo Bing Bing.

      You could choose DDG but that is Bing too.

      In fact as it claims to also use Yahoo then it becomes Bing + Bing.

      Yahoo search is Bing search so its weard that DuckDuckGo is BingBing.

      ssshhhhh, don't tell anyone.

  3. ratfox

    I don't believe it

    Almunia is an accomplished politician, and knows how to play both sides. Last time there was also a claim that there would be no market test, and there was one in the end. He is playing a brinkmanship game, if only to avoid complaints from politics that he is not trying hard enough.

    But in the end, his goal is to extract a settlement; and he will leave office soon…

    I'm really curious what the new propositions are. I really wonder how they can be "much better" than the previous ones…

  4. Goldmember

    Bollocks

    Yet more Bullshit From Brussels(TM).

    Why should Google not have the right to promote its own products, on ITS OWN SITE? If it was employing underhanded tactics to force others out of the marketplace (as MS has done and been fined for MANY times previously) then fair enough, but Google should have control over the content that appears on its own domain. The fact that millions of people choose to physically navigate to the site every day, or switch their search widgets to Google, should not give MS, Brussels or anyone else the right to dictate whether a competitor's content is or isn't ranking highly enough.

    I'm not even particularly a fan of the company. In fact, I dislike MS slightly less than Google. But I do use Google products, as they're the best at what they do.

    It's shit like this that almost makes me want to vote UKIP.

    Almost...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Happy

      Almost

      That previous to last paragraph almost convinced me to downvote you.

      Almost...

      1. Goldmember
        Thumb Up

        Re: Almost

        Ha ha, thanks for pointing that out. I amended it to be more accurate.

  5. batfastad

    google site:microsoft.com

    Funny because the only way to actually find what you're looking for on the MS site is to ignore the built-in Bing and go Google.

    1. Jordan Davenport

      Re: google site:microsoft.com

      For the hell of it, I tried the "Bing It On" challenge with terms relating to Microsoft products such as Windows Defender Offline, Windows XP end of life date, etc, and Google won hands-down. At the end when the winner was announced, the results page asked me to take the challenge again.

      1. Zacherynuk

        Re: google site:microsoft.com

        it's far worse than that.

        It hangs at the end if you block adobe analytics.

        Unless BING wins (perhaps)

      2. tom dial Silver badge

        Re: google site:microsoft.com

        Thanks for the reference to "bing it on". Tried it, and it confirmed my previous evaluation. In this case, Google 3, Bing 0, Draw 2, generally in the range I've seen before. Having failed for years now to compete successfully, Microsoft engages its pet public interest group to lobby for hobbling the more successful search service.

  6. dssf

    Transparency, Inclusion... Who.. So "RICH"

    Recall when MS' was in its early days. How many core competitors were allowed "transparency, inclusion"?

    Recall when advertisers wanted to put ads into the black/grey border area surrounding the Windows boundary, when MS didn't know how or was too lazy to make windows make the boundary disappear/be covered up. How long did "transparency, inclusion" last for those companies after some body or court decided that Microsoft "owned" all the space, even behind the bezel.

    Recall when in court MS played a switcheroo with two different computers, one blue-desktop and the other the greenish one -- and got caught. Was that "transparency, inclusion"?

    Recall how much effort it took to get/force ms to allow OEMs to put competing browser shortcuts on the desktop..

    Recall, recall, recall...

    I'm less and less these days harping about the "destruction" of ms, for that really isn't viable, but a curtailment of its expanse would not be out of line -- but the competitors have to GET to that ability, and they cannot rest once they get there. And, they should get there as above-board as possible -- to set examples. Not saying Linux is an angel, and definitely not saying Mac is, either.

    But, as for Google, to echo a comment above, "Why reduce Google Search to shit just because Bing is", might be appropos. OTOH, I avoid using Bing, not because it is or is not "shit", but because I'm hanging on to resentment of how I perceive ms destroying companies that mattered to me, or complicating things that needn't be.

    And, for those who do not read (or read my posts), I DO have my severe, vitriolic gripes against Google -- namely, the vile, steadfast refusal to help users to "vault"/"lock down" and isolate from all these data slurping apps our contact, notes, photos, and anything else, including file paths those vile, hostile, intrusive, nosy 3rd-party apps go after with no right, permission, invitation, or app-related reason to do so.

    In the name of Transparency, Inclusion, that bit of negatvity on my part is recounted. For those who might want to know, or see some "balance"....

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cartel attacks monopoly !

    It has becoming more a car crash since Google had difficulties joining that bus.

  8. Grogan

    I run a computer service business where I do things like go to homes and offices to solve computer problems, remove malware, I get and set up new hardware for people etc. and generally do things for them that they don't know how to do themselves.

    I remove Bing anything on sight. Bing toolbars, Bing Desktop, Bing Search Provider (I actually delete it, not just make something else the default heheh) and if MSN is the homepage, I change it. I haven't yet met anyone that wanted Bing back.

    To be fair, I'll also say that I remove all other toolbars and/or things like "Google Desktop" as well (I can't stand pollution) though I make people's home pages plain old Google (www.google.ca in my case) unless they specifically want something else. It's a very useful, fast loading page without a pile of crap on it and seldom stalls the first opening of the browser like some of those other asshole portals.

    I do that primarily because Google finds the things people want instantly, even before they finish typing it. I know that choice is a good thing, but I don't see the point of using anything other than Google to search. I personally try others, but I have yet to find one I like better than Google. However, I'm not above saying that it's partly vindictive, because I detest Microsoft and distrust their search results.

    You'd be surprised at all the people that can't, or won't learn how to change their home page when it gets hijacked, by the way.

    1. Zacherynuk

      Isn't it curious how MS (defender / updates) will remove TOR

      But not MSN messenger - this is allowed to linger on in the background being nothing but a vector of attack.

      google has always been a good clean homepage, until they started that whole picture thing and were slammed for it - it went. Bing still does it. You don't want to be remote controlling a machine and have a search page take up a 2mb image.

  9. Ethangar

    Couldn't agree more. People make a choice to use google because it works, is quick and has limited fluff. Personally I don't see any problem with google showing their stuff higher up the list. I'm using their search so self promotion is to be expected. When I browse General motors site looking at cars I certainly don't expect them to link to Ford or Chrysler.

  10. Richard Jones 1
    FAIL

    I've tried a few so called search engines, zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Then I went back to Google and found that there were things outside in the real world and the results made sense. They did have problems in the past and the removal of the + and - operators is a pain, but at least I no longer get the "Do you mean the '7/8 inch drill bit' hotel?" type response that once plagued search results.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft ICOMP ©

    "ICOMP is a lobbying organisation sponsored by Microsoft .. Burson Marsteller .. provides the secretariat for ICOMP .. The secretariat is directed by the ICOMP council. Members of the Council are appointed by the Directors .. The Directors are appointed by the Trustees. Microsoft is the only trustee"

  12. Mikel

    Lobby demands

    Nothing is good enough for Microsoft's lobby. Google could shut down search worldwide, and Microsoft's lobby would demand an apology and reparations also. Given that they would demand Google start it up again and run it for their benefit for free.

    1. pacman7de

      Re: Lobby demands

      > Google could shut down search worldwide, and Microsoft's lobby would demand an apology and reparations ..

      No, all Microsoft are after is for Google to pay revenue to Microsoft for stealing their innovation in search space.That and a transaction fee for everything that goes through Google Search.

  13. sean.fr

    censorship by lazyness

    Lack of diversity in answers is a real issue in a surprising number of areas. For example, search on DC wiring color codes. You will gets lots pages which have clearly been copied from one to another talking about IEC standards. What you do not see, which you would expect to see is a heads up the fact that DC wiring colors are not harmonised in Europe. In France brown can be plus 48v or minus 48v. In UK minus 48v should be grey. Brown means plus volts. As telecomms equipment is typically on a -48v supply and comms folk routinely across borders, and have layers and layers of subcontractors... plenty of scope to damage equipment.

    If you need more than hear say, follow the source of the source, and use diverse search engines.

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