EU Competition Chief Threatens To Break Up Google Over ‘Grave Suspicions’

Eric Lieberman | Associate Editor

Margrethe Vestager, the European Union’s chief of competition, made some fairly threatening remarks against Google in a story published Sunday by the Telegraph, portending that the international governing body is considering breaking up the tech giant.

“I think it important to keep that question open and on the agenda,” Vestager said in an interview with the Telegraph, according to Gizmodo, referencing the purportedly potential need to enforce antitrust law. “We are not there yet but it is important to keep an awakened eye.”

Vestager and other top E.U. officials have “grave suspicions” about Google and its apparent dominance over certain markets, she said, presumably like digital media advertising leading them to consider the possibility of a forced, partial disintegration.

Vestager promised their intentions are not solely due to Google’s immense prowess. They aren’t trying to disrupt the economy, she argued. Rather, they want Google’s massiveness to not disrupt the economy.

“There is no ban on success in Europe,” she said, according to Gizmodo. “You get to be dominant and you get a special responsibility that you don’t destroy the already weakened competition … We have proven their dominance in search and we have found they have misused this dominance to promote themselves and diminish competitors.”

Vestager’s latest comments follow months and months of similar rhetoric and actions, as the continent continues to clamp down on or warn U.S.-based tech companies.

Some would probably argue that it’s at least partially based on envy, or perhaps attempts to level the playing field relative to their American counterparts. Nevertheless, Europe has been battling with Silicon Valley for some time now, trying to rein in the bullish businesses.

Through investigations, regulations, and monetary penalties, the E.U., as well as several members states, have expressed their deep-seated disapproval with the highly influential tech firms.

America seems to be following suit, albeit at a far more restrained, but still gradually growing rate. (RELATED: There’s A Newfound Hatred Of Silicon Valley)

More and more people are changing their positive public perceptions of firms like Google, Apple, Amazon, and especially Facebook, according to an Axios poll published Monday.

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