Berlin pushes Google to reveal search-engine secrets
Europe won’t let up in it’s pursuit to end Google’s “monopoly” over web search. That message is loud and clear. There’s been a number of suggestions put forward and now that the latest proposal from the European Union – one that was thought to be a “done deal” – has failed, companies are taking matters into their own hands.
Digital publishers such as the German giant Axel Springer are threatening to sue the European Commission in the EU Court of Justice in Luxembourg if it fails to generate an outcome that satisfies them.
“We built Google for users, not websites”
The big question is whether or not Google, a $60bn juggernaut, is phased by the European Union and it’s members. The claim that Google has a “monopoly” over search is disputed by it’s CEO, Eric Schmidt, on Google’s European blog pointing out that whilst Google has had success globally, websites like Bild, Le Monde and the Financial Times get most of their online traffic directly and that less than 15% comes from Google.
Schmidt also argues that Google is built around user experience. That means, Schmidt says, that their search results don’t favour their apps or online tools over others.
“Ask for the weather and we give you the local weather right at the top. This means weather sites rank lower, and get less traffic. But because it’s good for users, we think that’s OK.”
It’s clear Google and Europe will continue to battle on but if either of them will ever win the war remains to be seen.