In response to the European Commission’s decision to investigate allegations that Google is abusing its dominance in search and search advertising to punish smaller competitors, Julia Holtz, Senior Competition Attorney posted a response on its official blog:
As Google has grown, we’ve not surprisingly faced more questions about our role in the advertising ecosystem and our overall approach to competition. This kind of scrutiny goes with the territory when you are a large company. However, we’ve always worked hard to ensure that our success is earned the right way — through technological innovation and great products, rather than by locking in our users or advertisers, or creating artificial barriers to entry.
The European Commission has notified us that it has received complaints from three companies: a UK price comparison site, Foundem, a French legal search engine called ejustice.fr, and Microsoft’sCiao! from Bing. While we will be providing feedback and additional information on these complaints, we are confident that our business operates in the interests of users and partners, as well as in line with European competition law.
Given that these complaints will generate interest in the media, we wanted to provide some background to them. First, search. Foundem – a member of an organisation called ICOMP which is funded partly by Microsoft - argues that our algorithms demote their site in our results because they are a vertical search engine and so a direct competitor to Google. ejustice.fr’s complaint seems to echo these concerns.