In a Facebook dominated world, in a world where people see Facebook and the Internet as the same thing it saddens me that Google gets a 2.7 Billion Euro fine when Google is an excellent source to search for products, reviews and the best deal.
“What Google has done is illegal under E.U. antitrust rules,” Ms. Vestager said in a statement on Tuesday. “It denied other companies the chance to compete on the merits and to innovate. And most importantly, it denied European consumers a genuine choice of services and the full benefits of innovation.”
As a geeky consumer the website that I used most frequently to shop for electronics is toppreise, a swiss price comparison website. With that site I can usually find much better prices than if I was searching on Google, and best of all the products I order via the websites they recommend are based in Switzerland. Thanks to Google Translate in the Chrome web browser I am able to order from German web stores despite their providing content only in German. It is thanks to Google that I can get the best value for money.
If Google has a monopoly then this says more about the web user than the price comparison and shopping landscape online. I hardly ever, if ever click on Google ads when I carry out a web search for the simple reason that most of them are not available in Switzerland anyway.
If people are buying from Google, Amazon, Kobo and other websites then European businesses are suffering. Fnac, Mediamarkt and other companies are based in various European countries so consumers, who are well informed do have a variety of choices if they are not lazy.
As a blogger and content creator my biggest frustration is that we no longer have people jumping from website to website like we used to when Google was dominant. With websites we would be generating income for each other. In the age of Facebook we generate content, we attract our friends, and they make money off of our backs, off of our time invested. It’s precisely for this reason that I started blogging daily. It was to try to redistribute some of that income.
Facebook deserves a bigger fine than does Google in my humble opinion and based on my experiences.