The best phrase that immediately comes to mind regarding the European Union’s newly announced $2.7 billion fine against Google is “A giant load of bull.” Google is far from perfect, but the EU has a long history of specious claims against Google, and this is yet another glaring example.
EU politicians and bureaucrats — among the most protectionist and hypocritical on the planet — see Google as a giant piggy bank, an unlimited ATM machine. The EU wants the easy money, rather than admitting that so many of their own business models are stuck in the 20th (or in some cases the 19th!) century.
The EU is demanding “search equality” — but there’s nothing wrong with Google’s search result rankings, which exist to best serve Google users, not the EU government’s self-serving agenda.
And that’s the key: Where are all the ordinary Google users complaining about Google’s shopping search results rankings? You can’t find those users, because anyone who prefers using non-Google sites is absolutely able to do so at any time. Google services rank so highly in search because users prefer them. Yep, free choice!
The European Union in its typical way is treating the citizens of its member countries like children, who it feels are so ignorant that Big Mommy EU has to dictate how they use the Internet. Disgusting.
I find myself increasingly thinking that we may have more to fear from EU control of the Net than we would from even Russia or China. At least the leaders of those latter two countries are pretty upfront about their attitudes toward the Internet, however totalitarian they might be.
But the EU has its own authoritarian, “information control” mindset as well, in their case painted over with a thin and rotting veneer of faked liberalism.
When actions are taken against Google like what has happened today, the EU’s mask of respectability slips off and shatters onto the ground into a million shiny shards, revealing the EU’s true face — leering with envy and avarice for the entire world to see.