Google overhauls global advertising practices

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Google has shared its plan to change its global advertising practices ensuring they do not abuse its dominance. The settlement took place between French authorities and Google to give more power to publishers when advertising.

The deal and the difference it will make

After the landmark settlement between Google and the French, the search giant has vowed to change their global advertising business to not abuse their dominance. This deal could be a step in the right direction and help balance out Google’s advertising power by allowing publishers more control.

This settlement includes a hefty fine of $268 million (220 million Euros), and it is the first time the US tech giant has agreed to change rules regarding their ads business. Isabelle de Silva, France’s anti-trust chief, states: “The decision to sanction Google is of particular significance because it’s the first decision in the world focusing on the complex algorithmic auction processes on which the online ad business relies.”

This settlement may not affect the industry market share, but it will hopefully inspire similar anti-trust cases within the US and other jurisdictions.

What France’s case addressed

The case put forward by the French left out some aspects, such as the user privacy curbs, which will be introduced by Google that would be beneficial to them. They also did not discuss how Google leverages YouTube properties being the dominant search engine and how this control should be loosened.

France instead focused on the relationship between Google’s Ad Manager, which publishers use to sell ad space, and Google AdX, which manages ad space auctions. France discussed how their market share grew through both services sharing data strategically and not letting them operate smoothly with competitors. This privileged relationship was being seen as depriving publishers of the benefits of prospective industry competition.

Terms of the settlement

Google is committed to leveling the playing field within AdX through a third-party trustee, which will monitor them for the next three years. Some of the changes will be applied within the first few months of 2022, and it is also known that Google will not be appealing this decision.