[POLITICS] EU regulators hit Google with $1.7 billion fine for blocking out ad rivals in their search engine.

To Google officially from the EU: "One should understand that you are more than welcome to do business in Europe but with our rule book and with no illegal behavior,"

The European Union ordered Google to pay 1.49 billion euros ($1.69 billion) for fucking with the competition, in the online advertisement sector. Google has engaged in 'very abusive practices,' EU Commissioner says.

The European Commission said Google had placed exclusivity contracts on website owners, stopping them from including search results from Google's rivals. It said these clauses were replaced in 2009 by premium payments and in the same year, Google had asked publishers to seek permission on how rival ads were displayed.

The EU's competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, said Google had prevented rivals from being able to "compete and innovate fairly" in the online ad market.

"Google has cemented its dominance in online search adverts and shielded itself from competitive pressure by imposing anti-competitive contractual restrictions on third-party websites. This is illegal under EU antitrust rules," Vestager said in Brussels.

In response, Google's senior vice president of global affairs, Kent Walker said: "We've always agreed that healthy, thriving markets are in everyone's interest. We've already made a wide range of changes to our products to address the Commission's concerns. Over the next few months, we'll be making further updates to give more visibility to rivals in Europe."

The Alphabet company has previously defended the use of its ad technology, claiming it had been in place since 2006, is now superseded, and is a minor product.

In the fourth quarter of 2018, Google's core advertising business saw revenue increase 20 percent from the previous quarter to $32.6 billion — the same rate of growth as the last quarter.

The European Commission said between 2006 to 2016, Google was by far the strongest player in online search advertising in the European Economic Area, with a market share above 70 percent.
So it's EU versus Google

In 2017, the EU fined Google $2.7 billion for favoring its shopping service over their competitors.

In an interview with CNBC following the announcement, Vestager rejected any suggestion that the fines against Google would disrupt the relationship between Europe and the United States.

The competition supremo added that the commission had also imposed a number of fines on European companies.

"One should understand that you are more than welcome to do business in Europe but with our rule book and with no illegal behavior," she said.

Vestager has just 6 months left in her role but said her successor would enjoy the same strong mandate.

One of the staff members in Googles support, in a conversation told POLITICAL AVENUE:
--Don't work for Google !

Anyway: At Political avenue, we need a favor from google/Alphabet from time to time.

You share your most intimate secrets with your search engine without even thinking: medical, financial and personal issues, along with all the day to day things that make you, well, you. All of that personal information should be private, but on Google it’s not. On Google, your searches are tracked, mined, and packaged up into a data profile for advertisers to follow you around the Internet through those intrusive and annoying ever-present banner ads, using Google’s massive ad networks, embedded across millions of sites and apps.

In fact, it’s a myth that you need to track people to make money in web search. When you search ‘car’ we can show you a car ad without knowing anything about you. That’s how we make money and it doesn't involve tracking because it is based on the keyword and not the person. Google could do this too; they just choose not to— all that tracking is to power their ad networks so that ads can follow you around the Internet using your search history and other information they have on you.

So-called incognito mode won’t protect you either. That’s another myth. “Incognito” mode isn’t really incognito at all. It’s an extremely misleading name and in my opinion should be changed. All it does is delete your local browsing history after your session on your device, but does nothing from stopping any website you visit, including Google, from tracking you via your IP address and other tracking mechanisms like browser fingerprinting. Here’s the fine print:

To keep your searches private and out of data profiles, the government, and other legal requests, you need to use DuckDuckGo. We don’t track you at all, regardless what browsing mode you are in.

Each time you search on DuckDuckGo, it’s as if you’ve never been there before. We simply don’t store anything that can tie your searches to you personally, or even tie them together into a search history that could later be tied back to you. For more details, check out our privacy policy.

#2 — Block Google trackers lurking everywhere.

Google tracks you on more than just their search engine. You may realize they also track you on YouTube, Gmail, Chrome, Android, Gmaps, and all the other services they run. For those, we recommend using private alternatives like DuckDuckGo for search. Yes, you can live Google-free. I’ve been doing it for many years.

What you may not realize, though, is Google trackers are actually lurking behind the scenes on 75% of the top million websites. To give you a sense of how large that is, Facebook is the next closest with 25%. It’s a good bet that any random site you land on the Internet will have a Google tracker hiding on it. Between the two of them, they are truly dominating online advertising, by some measures literally making up 74%+ of all its growth. A key component of how they have managed to do that is through all these hidden trackers.

POLITICAL AVENUE HAS NOW REMOVED ALL GOOGLE TRACKERS AND ANALYTICS CODE FROM OUR WEBSITE.

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