EU Concludes Google Antitrust Action With a Whimper, Not a Bang

 

The European Union has announced an agreement with Google that resolves a longstanding antitrust action. If you search for, say, gas grills, you’ll no longer see a results page with a bunch of Google ads for gas grills. You’ll see ads from both Google and others. Tim Lee explains:

Instead of showing six Google-selected ads for gas grills, the results would show three gas grills from Google’s product search engine and another three ads from competitors. Google will be allowed to charge these competitors for including these ads at regulated rates comparable to those Google charges for inclusion in its own product search engine. Similar changes will be required in other cases where Google includes results from a specialized search engine in its general search results.

Let me get this straight. There will now be two categories of ads. One will be “Google shopping results,” which you pay Google to be included in. The other will be “Alternatives,” which you pay comparable rates to Google to be included in. Both will be displayed next to each other.

That’s not nothing, I guess, especially since advertisers will have more control over the presentation of their products in the “Alternatives” section. And there are some other tidbits in the agreement that also represent improvement, though they’re mostly things Google had previously agreed to implement. Unless I’m missing something, this seems like fairly small potatoes. School me in comments if I’m wrong about this.

 

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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