In the world of online search, Google has long been the dominant force. However, there are those who are not happy with the search giant’s hegemony. One such person is the outspoken CEO of a company called Easy Voyage. He is furious about the way Google’s practices have affected his business and wants to shed light on the issue.
When he searches for « vol New York » (flight to New York), he notices that his website is ranked much lower in the search results than before. This, according to him, is a significant problem. The CEO explains that being placed lower on the search results page means a 30% decrease in traffic for his website. He sees Google as not just a search engine but also a competitor.
The CEO believes that Google’s preference for promoting its own comparison tool, Google Flights, is unfair competition. When searching for flights to New York, Google displays orange advertisements on a significant portion of the screen, with a large frame in the middle offering flight suggestions. This frame used to be occupied by Easy Voyage’s website. The CEO likens this situation to a producer of sparkling water seeing a supermarket chain produce the same product and hide the original behind the shelves, while promoting their own.
He argues that Google is moving away from being an objective and transparent search engine that serves information to becoming a marketing company focused on generating wealth and making money. This shift in focus has had a direct impact on his business. Over the past two years, he has had to let go of twenty employees out of a total of 150.
Easy Voyage is not alone in its struggles. Many European companies have been affected by Google’s practices. In fact, the European Parliament has called for the dismantling of Google, separating its search engine from its other commercial services. However, these threats do not seem to faze David Drummond, the legal representative of Google. He sees these new services as progress for users, providing direct answers to their queries instead of having to click through multiple websites.
While Google’s approach may benefit users, it comes at the expense of competitors who are finding it difficult to stay afloat. As the battle between Google and European businesses continues, it remains to be seen how the search giant will respond to the growing concerns over its practices.