FairSearch - for the right result

Updated Statement from Thomas Vinje on Google’s proposal

The following is a statement from Thomas Vinje,
Spokesman and Legal Counsel for FairSearch
and a Partner at Clifford Chance


Brussels – 28 October 2013 – Google has said that its proposal addresses the European Commission’s concerns. We call on Google to make public its proposal to prove its point – something only Google can do. The Commission sent 125 copies of the proposal to organisations, along with a group of questions – and the requirement that we all keep everything confidential.

Daylight will prove Google’s point if it is right.

Until we have had time to review the RFI and the details of the new package of Google proposed remedies, I am reluctant to make any specific comment. But our hope was that the new commitments would take a fundamentally different approach to the first series of commitments so widely condemned by stakeholders.
It seems that no genuinely significant changes have been made to the initial proposal, so it is difficult to see how the new package can hope to solve the competition concerns Mr. Almunia has declared must be addressed.

We have taken good note of Commissioner Almunia’s request in his statement of 1 October that he wants stakeholders to present “concrete technical elements on the effectiveness of the proposed package, although the short time frame allowed by the RFI for response is likely to limit the amount of useful testing which is possible.

Our members are starting to receive their individual RFI requests, but I note that the Commission has marked these confidential. This limits our ability publicly to describe the new proposal and to express our concerns about it.

For more Information:

  • David Lawsky, dlawsky@fairsearcheurope.org, +322 613 28 24, mobile +32 472 91 47 48
  • Daniel Furby, daniel.furby@fipra.com, +322 613 2840, mobile +32 497 573 453
  • secretariat@fairsearcheurope.org