A month ago we reported that France May Fine Google Over Suspending AdWords Advertiser and most recently, Google acquired ITA an online travel booking engine.
As I explained in both posts, Webmasters fear that Google continues to get into their business. With the French case, it was a pricing search engine and the company claims Google demoted their site because it competes with Google Product Search. With ITA, travel search engines are fearing Google will do the same.
Of course, Google says they do not manually demote sites and would not demote a site if it competed with a service they offered.
Via the AP:
The European Union's antitrust chief said Wednesday he is looking "very carefully" at allegations that Google Inc. unfairly demotes rivals' sites in search results.
Google says its search results are entirely controlled by algorithms that demote sites with little useful content for users.
It is a bit funny. So many webmasters rely on Google for their online businesses to succeed. At the same time, they are in constant fear of Google getting into their business and taking away the sales they initially gave them. Just a very weird and sensitive area - a line Google has been balancing and arguably crossing over the years.
So the EU will be taking a "very close look" at Google's recent practices and hopefully protecting the webmasters and business owners, if applicable.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.