EU seeks feedback from rivals over Google antitrust offer

EU seeks feedback from rivals over Google antitrust offer

BRUSSELS - EU regulators will seek feedback from Google's rivals and other third parties on Monday before deciding whether to accept the Internet search giant's offer to settle a three-year antitrust investigation and stave off a possible fine.

In July, competitors shot down Google's first proposal intended to allay concerns that it was blocking rivals including Microsoft in web search results in Europe, saying it would only reinforce the company's dominance.

That prompted the European Commission to demand fresh concessions from Google.

Earlier this month, Google tweaked its offer to allow rivals to display their logos and make their links more visible to users. It will also allow advertisers to export their advertising campaigns to other platforms.

It also agreed to appoint an independent trustee to monitor the process.

"The Commission is sending today information requests," Antoine Colombani, the Commission spokesman for competition policy, said in an email.

"Information is sought, in particular, from complainants in the ongoing proceedings and from all those who responded to the initial market test of Google's proposals which the Commission launched in April," he said.

Google complainants include online mapping services such as Germany's Hotmaps and Britain's Streetmap, British price comparison site Foundem, a group of German and Spanish publishers and online travel sites such as Expedia.

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