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A Letter On Restoring Competition in Online Search

To the European Commission and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission:

FairSearch.org applauds the ongoing effort by both agencies to investigate Google’s anti-competitive business practices in the online search marketplace.

Google controls nearly 80% of all searches done in the U.S., and more than 90% of all searches in Europe. It has the unique ability to manipulate the marketplace and illegally thwart competition. Ending its abuses and restoring competition in online search is vital to ensuring continued economic growth, innovation and consumer choice.

We firmly believe this can be achieved through enforcement of existing laws.

The remedy to restore competition must be meaningful and enforceable. Simply requiring Google to accurately label its products, paid search results and advertisements will not undo the harm to competition that Google already has inflicted.

A limited “remedy” will not prevent Google from continuing its other exclusionary conduct, such as preferencing its own services or demoting the rankings of competitive sites. Rather, it would enable Google to retain the fruits of its unlawful conduct and would preserve Google’s dominance. In the end, placement matters far more than labeling.

FairSearch.org is committed to competition in the marketplace and constructive engagement with antitrust enforcers around the globe.

By focusing on real and enforceable remedies, we can restore competition, foster innovation and protect consumer choice in online search.