The European Parliament has voted for Google to be subject to stricter regulation and has suggested search should be broken off from the rest of the company.
The motion, which does not give the ministers any actual power to act against the company, comes as politicians seek to curb Google’s dominance of the search market in Europe.
The vote, which earned widespread support from MEPs (passing 384 votes to 174) will be used to influence the European Commission - the organisation conducting anti-trust investigations against Google.
The EC is looking into claims Google users is all-powerful position in the European search market (its market share eclipsing its dominance in the US) to give preference to its own products.
The motion encourages the commission to “prevent any abuse in the marketing of interlinked services by operators of search engines,” while also asking the regulators “to consider proposals with the aim of unbundling search engines from other commercial services.”
Those politicians driving the motion claimed that the unbundling of Google search was just one option that should be considered as they seek to tackle Google’s perceived monopoly.
Two of its authors claimed its purpose was “not ideological against Google. We are against monopolies. Unbundling is one of the ideas, but we proposed several.”
Any action against Google now will depend on the European Commission, but it is exceedingly likely Google would strongly resist any request to split its core search division up from its other businesses.
This week, the American giant firm has also been subject to calls to spread the “right to be forgotten” edict to other Google search domains beyond those in Europe.
Happy Thanksgiving from Europe, Google!