New Year, Same Issue – CNIL Levies Maximum Fine on Google for Privacy Violation

The CNIL, France’s data protection authority, announced yesterday this week that it was fining Google 150,000 euros, the maximum fine it could impose on a corporation, over the company’s privacy policy not adhering to EU privacy law. This conclusion follows a thorough investigation on behalf of all privacy enforcement agencies in the EU and beyond. … read more

Google’s 2nd commitments proposal will advance its commercial strategy to transition ‘organic’ search traffic into ‘paid’ traffic

ICOMP has today released a report analysing the contents of Google’s 2nd set of proposals and their likely impact. The paper, written by ICOMP Spokesperson, economics expert and former DG COMP official, Juan Briones, finds that that the proposed commitments do not address competition concerns but rather, serve to progress the commercial strategy of Google, … read more

Almunia says that Google’s proposals are “not acceptable”

This morning on Spanish Radio, European Commissioner Joaquin Almunia announced that Google’s most recent set of proposals in the ongoing European antitrust case are “not acceptable”. In the interview he also commented that these latest proposals do not “eliminate our concerns regarding competition and in particular regarding the way Google’s rivals in vertical search – … read more

Google’s Privacy and Competition Violations and the Consumer Harm

Nearly two years have passed since Google announced that it would implement a new privacy policy governing more than 60 of its services. The new policy, which Google imposed on users in March 2012, granted Google the power to combine all of the personal data it collects from users across these 60+ different services and … read more

ICOMP Announces Results of New Eye Tracking Study

Eye tracking study confirms that Google benefits most from its proposed ‘rival links’ solution to EU abuse concerns An eye tracking study, commissioned by ICOMP (Initiative for a Competitive Online Marketplace) has revealed that Google’s proposed commitments relating to the display of rival links, continue to weigh heavily in favour of Google’s own services and … read more

What’s Next for Google and Privacy in Europe

Following an in-depth investigation (led by the French data protection authority, the CNIL, on behalf of all of the 31 Privacy enforcement agencies in Europe) which concluded that Google’s privacy policy fails to comply with data protection laws, in June the CNIL gave Google a three month deadline to amend the policy and bring it … read more

CEPIC and the Press Publishers’ coalition speak out

Representing thousands of photographers and picture agencies, CEPIC, the Center of the Picture Industry, last week submitted a formal antitrust complaint against Google’s use of third-party images before the European Commission. Almost simultaneously, a coalition of European Publishers publicly said that the revised package is ineffective and that their adoption “would be nothing short of … read more

A Public Letter to Mr Verney

This week ICOMP authored and sent a letter to Google’s Mr Verney, addressing comments he made last week, which we believe deserves a public response. The letter has been posted online here, whilst the full text can be found below. ### Dear Mr Verney, Last week you were widely quoted accusing Google’s competitors of seeming “less … read more

If at first you don’t succeed…

As has been expected, this morning the European Commission announced it would issue formal requests for information (RFIs) on the revised commitments proposed by Google to “complainants in the ongoing proceedings and from all those who responded to the initial market test.” It has been suggested that some 125 RFIs have been sent out and the Commission … read more

ICOMP presents its new IP White Paper, written by Andrew Keen

ICOMP is proud to present its latest White Paper, entitled “Profiting from Free: The Scourge of Online Piracy and How Industry Can Help”. Written by the well-known author and internet entrepreneur Andrew Keen, the paper explores the implications of content piracy online on the economy, creativity, innovation and culture. On the internet, content is king. … read more