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Brazilian Comparison Shopping Sites Question Anti-Competitive Practices in Google Inc. at Brazil
Dec 27, 2011 (05:12 PM EST)
SAO PAULO, Dec. 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- After the various processes that pass on antitrust in the United States, Europe and South Korea regarding the anticompetitive practices of Google Inc, a new line of investigation was opened in Brazil. The comparison shopping site Buscape filed on Tuesday (12/20) representation in the Secretary of Economic Law (SDE) of the Ministry of Justice regarding what it alleges are discriminatory practices adopted by Google Inc. in its Google Search tool, which Buscape claims has the sole purpose of boosting its product Google Shopping artificially.
The process has a goal of enforce the adoption of a precautionary measure to determine the end of discrimination against all comparison shopping sites. The representation shows that Google Shopping has an information architecture differentiated from competitors. While all comparators are identified only by a link that allows one click, Google Shopping appears with product image and up to five chances to click, ratings, comments, number of advertisers stores and prices in the search result in search engine.
"Buscape believes in free competition and aims to contribute to the maintenance of a fair competitive environment," said Rodrigo Borer, VP Comparison Shopping of Buscape. The company argues that the information presented to consumers as a result of a natural search should follow the same criteria for all market participants in terms of exposure and outcome on the search page, thereby ensuring reliable and fairer competition in accordance with the uses and search habits of Internet users.
"The practice impacts in a discriminatory manner the entire market of comparison shopping sites and affects especially Internet users, who are final consumers," said Borer. "The results presented by Google Search can induce consumers to a misguided purchase, since by induction of clicking on the first result is natural, and he/she can fail to have the lowest price and access to important information about the product or store."