Searchville is like a lot of towns where one company dominates.
Visit Searchville’s local businesses to learn more about the impact that Google’s anticompetitive behavior has on search, companies who advertise and ultimately consumers.
A trip to the Searchville Lemonade Stand tells the story of Google’s practice of scraping content from other websites.
Visit Club Droid to learn about Google’s exclusive deals which harm partners and block the introduction of new innovations for consumers.
The Searchville Travel Agent demonstrates the negative impact of Google’s acquisitions of competitive threats on competition and innovation.
In Searchville, there’s more to search than meets the eye. Take a look around to learn more.
Just want the facts?
Check out the FairSearch paper about the ways that Google’s anticompetitive practices harm consumers consumers, websites and content creators, advertisers and economic development. Specifically, Google’s exclusionary practices include:
- Deceptive Search Display – Google now displays non-algorithmic results at the top or in the middle of the results page in a manner that does not clearly flag for consumers that these results are placed there artificially by Google – frequently with links to Google’s own pages.
- Search Manipulation – Search rankings are determined by algorithms developed by the search provider that are supposed to identify the sites most likely to be relevant to the user’s query. These algorithms can be programmed, however, to exclude, penalize, or promote specific sites or whole categories of sites.
- Acquisitions – Google has purchased a series of companies that eliminated nascent threats to its search dominance.
- Unauthorized or Coerced Scraping of Content – Most of the “content’ that Google provides in its sites such as Places or local or universal search is not generated by Google through its own investment. Rather, Google scrapes the content developed by other websites and displays it on a Google page.
- Quality Score Manipulation – Given the opaque and subjective – and advertiser-specific – process, Google has the ability to manipulate paid search to limit competition. Numerous companies have complained about Google raising minimum bids to prohibitively high levels, without warning and with little or no justification.
- Exclusive Dealing – Google also has maintained and expanded its dominance in search and search advertising by imposing exclusivity restrictions in its “syndication” and “distribution” agreements.
- Advertising Platform Restrictions – With Google’s dominant share of user queries and the user “eyeballs” that advertisers want to access, Google’s paid search advertising platform, AdWords, is a “must buy” for businesses that advertise online. Google uses this power to deprive other online advertising platforms of business.