Accusations of search engine tomfoolery have been levied at Google since the late 90’s, though mostly by disgruntled SEOs who couldn’t get their sites on page 1. Now, there’s a charge that might hold a bit more weight; the EU competition authority is maintaining that Google has purposefully distorted search results over the past two years in favor of their shopping ads.
What are shopping ads? Those are the little product offering boxes you see at the top of each search query. They include the name of the store, a picture of the item, and the item’s price.
The legal ramifications are being levied specifically by the EU’s antitrust commission, who keeps a hard line policy against nefarious internet activities. This lies in sharp contrast with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, who’s only apparent beef with Google came back in 2013; this was when they forced the company to stop removing reviews and other content from rival websites for Google products.
As Google continues to balloon into a monopolistic online entity, regulating them will become increasingly difficult. Considering that the company has a market capitalization of a little under $800 billion, it’s officially hit behemoth-sized proportions.
But wait there’s more.
Google has also been accused of using its Android operating system to edge out rivals, in addition to keeping competitors away on the “AdSense for Search” platform.
But wait, there’s even more. This time though, it’s on behalf of Microsoft.
Microsoft really, really, really wants people using Bing over Google search. To encourage this, they’ve offered rewards in the form of points and other freebies for people who use Bing. Yep, things are certainly getting weird out there on the internet.
In video game-like fashion, new users start out as a “Level 1,” earning up to 60 points each day by searching for just 10 things through Bing.
From there, your goal is to get to 500 points in a month. Once this feat is achieved, you’ll officially become a “Level 2.” This allows you the ability to amass up to 150 points each day.
So what do these points actually get you? Well, a number of prizes… potentially. You can exchange them for things like, an Xbox Live Gold Membership; a 12-month Groove Music Pass, or a one-month Groove Music Pass.
DISCLAIMER: We are in no way affiliated with Bing. We don’t care which search platform you use, just as long as you don’t use Yahoo!
That is all.
— Bing Ads (@BingAds) June 2, 2017