SEOHost.Net Principal: The French Antitrust Case Against Google Could…

We could be looking at a complete paradigm shift where search is concerned

Terry Cane, COO of global SSL service domain registration and SEO hosting provider SEO Host (https://www.seohost.net), believes the recent French rulings against Google's parent company, Alphabet, could significantly impact search engine optimization in the long-term.

The first ruling, reported by Reuters in June, saw the tech giant commit to changing its global advertising business. The settlement, which included a fine of $268 million, is meant to put power back in the hands of publishers. And though it may not have any immediate impact, French authorities hope their success here inspires similar antitrust cases elsewhere in the world.

The second ruling, announced earlier this month, was focused on Google's News Showcase program. Regulators maintained that Google failed to comply with orders regarding negotiation with France's news publishers amidst a copyright dispute. The company was fined approximately $590 million and will face fines of over $1 million a day if it does not draft proposals for how it will compensate publishers for their content.

"At first glance, neither of these rulings have very much to do with SEO, but consider the longer-term," says Cane. "Google has held itself as somewhat unknowable for decades, ever since its inception. What we know about its algorithms is based entirely on what the company has told us directly, "

"This antitrust case, coupled with some of the other recent lawsuits against the company, could be the first step in changing that," she continues. "We could be looking at a complete paradigm shift where search is concerned. Even in the short-term, the notion that Google might be violating copyright law with some of its functionality is significant."

Google, which agreed to pay $76 million over the next three years to a group of French news publishers, has for its part maintained that it only ever acted in good faith. Although disappointed with both decisions, the company has acknowledged that it will comply with them.

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