German publishers are opposing Googles plan to stop using third party
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German publishers are opposing Google’s plan to stop using third-party cookies

Google is facing a complaint from Germany’s biggest publishers and advertisers, who are demanding European Commission action over the US company’s plan to stop using third-party cookies in its Chrome browser. Hundreds of publishers, advertisers and media groups, led by Axel Springer (publisher of Bild and Politico), believe that not using cookies violates EU law.

Image source: The Financial Times

Image source: The Financial Times

The reaction of German publishers and media groups is not surprising, as Google’s refusal to use cookies blocks the ability to analyze user activity while viewing online content, thus negatively impacting targeted advertising revenue. The publishers’ claims are set out in a 108-page complaint sent to the European Commission, the industry’s main regulator in the European Union.

The complainants argue that while Google’s planned changes will harm local businesses, the American IT giant itself will be able to collect and process user data in a way that will not impact innovation on its ad-based search business. The new complaint can be seen as another attempt to force the European Commission to launch an investigation into Google, which could result in the American company being fined up to 10% of global sales. Recall that several antitrust investigations have been conducted against Google in the European Union over the past decade, with the IT giant being partially fined a total of €8 billion.

“Publishers should remain able to ask their users for consent to data processing. <…> Google must respect the relationship between publishers and users without interfering in it.”the publishers complain.

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Robbie Elmers

Robbie Elmers is a staff writer for Tech News Space, covering software, applications and services.

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