By Quandary Peak Research
The European Commission’s investigation of Google’s alleged misconduct has done nothing but expand and intensify over the last six years. Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s Competition Commissioner appointed in the midst of the investigations, has spearheaded the ‘don’t back down’ attitude taken by the EU. She resisted her predecessors’ efforts to settle the case with the tech giant, and has instead added to the list of accusations in the anti-trust lawsuit.
The accusations against Google now include earlier claims that the company abused its market dominance with unfair business practices pertaining to its comparison shopping services and search advertisements, as well as more recent allegations that it engaged in predatory business practices by imposing unfair restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators. Earlier this year, the European Commission sent its second and third Statement of Objections to Google formalizing its charges against the company and heightening the profile of the case. Google continues to deny the charges and is working to settle the disputes, while avoiding heavy penalties. In other words, the battle is very much alive and well.
It may surprise many readers to realize this case is now well into its sixth year, so we’ve created a timeline to track the major developments and key findings of the case.
February 24, 2010 – The European Commission confirms receipt of three antitrust complaints against Google. The complaints were authored by Foundem, Ciao, and eJustice. The Commission informs Google of the complaints and asks the company to address the allegations.
November 30, 2010 – The European Commission opens an antitrust investigation of Google, citing allegations that Google has “abused a dominant position in online search”. The Commission’s press release indicates the investigation will explore three claims:
- That Google lowered the rank of unpaid search results of competing services
- That Google lowered the […]