Saturday 18 November 2017

How the EU's seven-year legal battle with Google unfolded

Google Docks Office, Dublin, Ireland
Google Docks Office, Dublin, Ireland

The European Union has fined Google a record sum for abusing its dominance in online searches.

Here is a look back at the key dates in the EU's legal tussle with the technology company.

November 2010 - The EU opens a formal inquiry into whether Google manipulates search results in a way that favours its own business. The probe includes whether the search results favour Google's services, such as its price comparison business, how it displays the contents of rivals, and how it manages ads.

April 2013

Google offers a change to its practice in the hope of ending the investigation.

July-December 2013

After feedback from complainants, the EU twice rejects Google's offer to change its search results as not good enough.

February 2014

The EU and Google reach a tentative agreement on how to fix the search results. This keeps Google from paying a fine.

May 2014

In a separate case, the European Court of Justice rules that Google must consider EU citizens' requests to remove irrelevant or embarrassing personal information that pops up on a search of their names.

September 2014

After receiving complaints from Google's competitors, the EU appears to make a U-turn on its settlement with Google on search results, declaring it insufficient.

April 2015

After five years of investigations and talks, the EU formally charges Google with abusing its dominant position in search results, a step up in the legal battle. It also opens a preliminary investigation into whether Google uses its Android mobile operating system to rig the market for apps.

April 2016

 The EU charges Google with using Android to gain a market advantage in mobile apps.

June 2017 - The EU fines Google a record 2.42 billion euro (£2.1 billion) for breaching antitrust rules with its online shopping service. It says Google abused its market dominance as a search engine by giving an illegal advantage to another Google product, its comparison shopping service.

Press Association

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