Google appeals against fine of 1.49 billion euros, Tech company Google is going to appeal this week against a fine from 2019. The European Commission fined Google 1.49 billion euros for abuse of power. Hearings will take place at the General Court of the European Union over the next three days.
According to a spokesman for the EU Court, it is a first step in the appeal. “The various parties come up with their views and arguments, then the Court of First Instance will deliberate,” he says. It can then take months before a ruling follows.
The case revolves around a European fine that Google was imposed in March of 2019. According to the European Commission, Google abused its strong dominant position for ten years. The company would have favored its own advertising arm Adsense over competing ad sellers.
“The European Commission has fined Google for abusing its dominant position in offering online advertisements in the search engine,” European Commissioner Margrethe Vestager (Competition) wrote at the time. “The company shielded itself from competitors and that is illegal in Europe.”
Abuse of power from 2006 to 2016
The adsense issue started in 2006. Websites that wanted to place a Google search bar on their pages at the time were obliged to only place ads via AdSense since that year. Google’s competitors, such as Microsoft and Yahoo, could not purchase advertisements on that advertising platform.
Three years later, the rules were relaxed, when advertisements from competing advertisers were also allowed. Websites had to place a minimum number of ads from Google. It wasn’t until 2016 that Google stopped using this policy altogether.
The European Commission believes that the tech company has abused its power for ten years and that it still has to pay a fine. Google appealed that decision. In a statement in 2019, the company announced that it had made adjustments to accommodate the European Commission. “We always strive for a healthy market that offers a solution for everyone.”
The General Court of the European Union may not be the final stop for this case. Google can also go to the European Court of Justice to get right.
Billions in fines for abuse of power Google
The fine for the policy around AdSense is one of three billion fines that Google has received in recent years for abuse of power. The company was fined 4.34 billion euros in 2018 because makers of Android phones were required to provide the Google search engine.
In 2017, the European Commission fined Google 2.4 billion euros in a google shopping case, which disadvantaged competitors. Google has also appealed against these fines.
Google appeals against fine of 1.49 billion euros
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