A new report from Reuters suggests that a third Google antitrust fine from the European Commission could be levied at the company as early as next week.
Reportedly, this third fine will be smaller than the previous two Google antitrust fines. This fine is related to Google’s AdSense platform, which is reportedly responsible for over 80 percent of the online advertising business in the EU.
The European Commission — led by Margrethe Vestager, pictured above — alleges that Google had prevented third parties using its AdSense product from displaying search advertisements from Google’s competitors for over 10 years.
In 2016, Google altered its AdSense business practices to allow larger companies to display competing ads. However, with over a decade of alleged anti-competitive behavior, Vestager is working to lay down a fine regardless of Google’s current policies.
Previously, Vestager led two other Google antitrust fines: the first for 2.4 billion euros (~$2.7 billion) imposed on the company in 2017 for blocking rivals of shopping comparison websites, and the second in 2018 for 4.34 billion euros (~$4.9 billion) for using the Android OS to block competition. That second fine was the largest ever imposed.
Other than the fine being smaller this time around, we don’t yet know how much it will cost Google.
Neither Google nor the European Commissioner had any comment on the matter. We’ll likely find out next week if this rumor is true.
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