Google Accused of Unfair Business Tactics

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BRUSSELSThere are those who claim that Google isn't playing fair. In the UK, the British price comparison website Foundem has accused Google of unfair business tactics, and various online French and German companies have also cited Google for using its role as the dominant search engine to squeeze potential competitors and steer internet users towards Google products.

Ciao, owned by Microsoft, complained about Google's standard terms and conditions. Foundem and, a legal search engine based in France, have both alleged that Google demoted their sites in search results because they were rivals.

Google is said to have revealed the allegations in an online blog.

According to the 2/25/10 issue of the Belfast Telegraph, the European Commission (EC) is studying three complaints against Google, although officials in Brussels say there is no formal investigation so far.

For its part, Google has said that it was duly notified of the complaints by the commission and insists it has done nothing wrong. The company maintains that its operations are in line with European Union competition policy.

The EC stated, "The commission can confirm that it has received three complaints against Google, which it is examining. The commission has not opened a formal investigation for the time being. As is usual when the commission receives complaints, it informed Google earlier this month and asked the company to comment on the allegations. The commission closely co-operates with the national competition authorities. No further information can be given at this stage."

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