Google bows to Europeans: Agrees legally binding search changes
Google has offered to make legally binding changes to its search results in a deal with European regulators.
A better deal than the Americans got
This follows a two-year antitrust investigation into whether the search giant abuses its dominance of online search, the Wall Street Journal reports today.
The deal is not yet public but the WSJ cited two people briefed on the agreement who spoke anonymously .
Google, they said, has agreed to clearly label search results from its own properties, like Google Plus Local or Google News, and in some cases to show links from rival search engines.
The biggest change concerns search results on topics like shopping and flights. Competitors like Yelp and TripAdvisor have been concerned that Google will favour its own results over theirs.
The changes will not be widely seen for at least a month, "while rivals and others in the industry can weigh in on the plan, in a process called market testing, "said the Journal.
If the proposal is approved after all this, the European Commission will have got far more stringent concessions from Google than did United States regulators earlier this year. That settlement was non-binding , the WSJ pointed out.