The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has ordered an inquiry into Alphabet-owned Google following allegations made by news publishers. The CCI, in its initial view, admitted that Google had violated certain antitrust laws. In its order passed on Friday, the CCI has said that Google dominates online search services in the country and may have imposed unfair conditions on news publishers. Google has not said anything in this matter yet.
According to Reuters, the ‘Digital News Publishers Association’ is the complainant in this case. It is an association of digital branches of some of the largest media companies in the country. It said that Google denied its members fair advertising revenue. The CCI order said that the vital role played by the news media in a well functioning democracy cannot be underestimated. It seems that Google is using its dominant position in the market.
News organizations that have been losing their advertising revenue to online aggregators like Google have complained that over the years, tech companies have been using their stories and other features in search results without paying for them. The CCI order also mentions new rules in Australia and France that have led to billions of dollars in licensing deals between Google and news organizations around the world.