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FairSearch Statement on Google’s Proposed Commitments to European Commission

The European Commission announced it has opened a ‘market test’ of Google’s proposal to settle the EC’s investigation into allegations of an illegal abuse of dominance by Google, and released Google’s proposal here.

Thomas Vinje, counsel and spokesman for FairSearch, issued the following statement:

“FairSearch applauds the Commission for laying out a clear and compelling case that Google is abusing its dominant position by giving its own products preferential treatment in search results. This is an important conclusion that must lead to meaningful remedies.

We have always said that the best remedy for consumers and innovation would be to require Google to apply the same policy to search results for its own products as it does to all others.

However, Google’s proposed commitments appear to fall short of ending the preferential treatment at the heart of the Commission’s case based on formal complaints from 17 companies. Google’s own screen shots in its proposal (see p. 30) show it seeks approval to continue preferential treatment for its own products.

We will study the proposal in detail and offer an empirical analysis based on actual tests.”