Italy really doesn't like Google, first they send 3 Google executives to jail over a YouTube video being posted, without their knowledge and now they are going after Google for how they pay Italian AdSense publishers.
The antitrust authority is investigating Google Adsense policies regarding the payments made to the publishers and the lack of transparency in how they're calculated.
After an initial review of Adsense Terms & Conditions, the authority outlined the following: (translation)
- Google is not obliged to comunicate how the payments are calculated;
- The payments are calculated exclusively from data that Google holds;
- Google can modify at any moment the price determination and payment structure at its discretion.
International publishers have always complained that it is unclear as to how they are being paid. They always complain about the conversion rate being used for payments. It is not specific to Italy, but it seems the Italians are looking to do something about it.
There is very little US news about this. Reuters has a one liner about it, saying:
ROME, March 11 (Reuters) - Italy's antitrust authority in a statement on Thursday:
* Says in a statement that it is extending its probe into Google (GOOG.O) to cover the company's conduct in gathering advertising revenues in Italy.
Not sure why we have not heard more about this antitrust case.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.