Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) is under the radar and may need to come up with an acceptable resolution if it wants to avoid a record $60 billion fine in Europe as far as its search practices are concerned. Apparently the search engine giant has been trying to settle an antitrust probe since 2010. Google has been accused of content scraping as well as setting algorithm changes where users are directed to their servers thus reducing visibility of competing websites and other services.
Unless settled, Google stands to lose up to 10 percent of their annual global revenue unless they come up with a proposal that would be acceptable to the EU commission. Google had already submitted a couple of proposals, but such were deemed “lacking” still.
Apparently the submitted proposals still covered “too much scope,” prioritizing their own products according to their corporate rivals who had been given copies of Google’s proposal. Enjoying over 90% of the market share, Google’s proposals are nowhere near what rival companies find fair. In fact, the call to reject the Google proposal continues despite what Google senior vice president Kent Walker calls “a pretty good job” as far as addressing the issue at hand.
E.U. Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia is giving Google one more chance to revise their proposal, but with only little time to spare. Almunia is pressuring Google to come up with a better proposal but with only weeks to spare. With companies like Microsoft not budging or liking Google’s proposals, the row may be far from being resolved. Compounding all of that is the fact that Almunia is listening carefully what Google’s rival companies are saying.
Should the EU commission fail to get a favorable proposal in the coming weeks, Almunia bares that he will settle the issue once and for all – the traditional way. On whether that is good or bad seems to be leaning more on the latter.