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Germany: Google hit with antitrust lawsuits


Google has been hit with antitrust complaints in Germany from newspaper and magazine publishers (Federation of German Newspaper Publishers (BDZV) and the Association of German Magazine Publishers (VDZ)) who want the company to pay for using article snippets in its news service and search results. The publishers also complain about a lack of transparency in the way Google presents its search results.

According to Geek Hans-Joachim Fuhrmann, a spokesman for the German Newspaper Publishers Association, said the Web sites of all German newspapers and magazines together made 100 million euros, or $143 million, in ad revenue, while Google generated 1.2 billion euros from search advertising in Germany. “Google says it brings us traffic, but the problem is that Google earns billions, and we earn nothing,” Mr. Fuhrmann said.

Well, sound like the Rupert Murdoch idea: We have no clue how to innovate our business model, so let’s try to “extort” money out of Google.

Ciao claims its contract with Google unfairly limits its own ability to sell advertising and that it lacks transparency because it doesn't give the company the ability to review if ad revenues paid by AdWords are correct.

Euro-Cities objects to Google’s practice of offering free online mapping services. Letting just anyone embed Google maps in their sites is anti-competitive and killing its own business.


For more information see: Pfanner, Eric An Antitrust Complaint for Google in Germany, New York Times



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