Search giant Google could be headed towards another showdown with the European Union regulators, reports the Wall Street Journal. In fact, a fresh anti-trust charge, the third against Google, could be coming its way as soon as before August itself.
However, the newest could be more pain inducing as it targets the way Google manages its AdWords ad placement service. Advertising happens to be the backbone of Google parent company Alphabet and contributes to around 90 percent of its revenue.
The Commission is reported to have asked Google’s competitors to share the confidential information with the search giant that they have submitted before the EU and which can prove their charge against Google of misusing its dominant position in advertising.
That also happens to be the usual practice at the Commission as it needs to provide Google all the evidence stacked up against it before it can formally bring in the charges. Eventually, the Commission will have to decide whether Google is indeed preventing its competitors from placing ads on their sites that are in direct competition with Google’s ads.
Google had earlier run into some serious friction with the EU over charges of skewing its search algorithms that biased against its competitor’s sites while promoting its own. Google has also been accused of misusing its dominant status with the Android platform in the smartphone segment.
The Commission has been watching over the terms and conditions that dictate Google’s AdWords and AdSense services. Worth mentioning, Google has earlier been forced to comply in another case with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission ruling in 2013 where it said it would do away with all contentious restrictions that apply to other advertisers.
In another development, News Corps that publishes The Wall Street Journal too has accused Google of “scraping” content from publishers while displaying news article search results and has filed formal complaints with the Commission on this.