Discontent flares over Google's 'dominance'

Advertisers are growing increasingly suspicious of Google's dominance of the online market, and last week's tie-up with Yahoo has only added fuel to the fire.

Under the deal, Google's ads will be shown with Yahoo search results, and, although the current deal only affects the US and Canada, UK advertisers are crying monopoly and calling for regulatory investigation of the whole market.

Google is the overwhelmingly dominant force on the internet, say critics. It nets half of the UK's £2.8bn online advertising spend and conducts 85 per cent of searches. Yahoo is in second place with 10 per cent.

"Things are moving towards an incredibly anti-competitive situation given that Google and Yahoo control such a huge proportion of the market," Nigel Gwilliam, from the Institute of Practitioners of Advertising, said.

Advertisers are already restricted, according to some agencies. "There is a limit to what you can do with clients' digital spend at the moment, because Google is pretty much the whole market," Arjo Ghosh, the chief executive of iCrossing, said. "It is becoming a dominant media owner, but without the experience or regulation or monitoring there is with traditional owners like television."

Rumblings of discontent have started. The most recent run-in was over trademark rules. Last month, Google caused a furore by changing its rules to allow companies to advertise against searches for rivals' products. "Before the trademarks issue, people were willing to give Google the benefit of the doubt, but since then the feeling is the gloves are off," Mr Ghosh said.

But search is not the only concern. Google already has an aggregator, which pushes ads out to a huge network of smaller sites, and the $3.1bn (£1.6bn) purchase of DoubleClick, cleared by regulators this spring, moved the company into the third-party ad-serving business, taking control of the middleman managing and tracking online campaigns.

The plan is for a single ad platform across all online formats, which can be extended to include television, radio and print. Not only does the consolidation raise questions about monopolistic market power but companies are also worried about commercial privacy. "The issue with DoubleClick is whether we want Google to have access to all that information about our clients' businesses," Jo Lyall, the head of digital at MindShare, an agency, said. "Theoretically data can't be shared, but technically Google will have a very good perspective on what sites and channels are working for every advertiser, which is a concern because then they know who they have to compete with."

Google denies its dominance. Omid Kordestani, a senior vice-president at the company, says of the Yahoo deal: "This kind of arrangement is commonplace in many industries, and it doesn't foreclose robust competition."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
food + drink
Life and Style
Shoppers in Covent Garden, London, celebrate after they were the first to buy the iPhone 6, released yesterday
tech
News
Liam Payne has attacked the media for reporting his tweet of support to Willie Robertson and the subsequent backlash from fans
peopleBut One Direction star insists he is not homophobic
Life and Style
healthFor Pure-O OCD sufferers this is a reality they live in
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvSeries 5 opening episode attracts lowest ratings since drama began
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Affleck stars as prime suspect Nick Dunne in the film adaptation of Gone Girl
filmBen Affleck and Rosamund Pike excel in David Fincher's film, says Geoffrey Macnab
Life and Style
fashion
News
news
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
people
Travel
Warner Bros released a mock-up of what the new Central Perk will look like
travel
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Quantitative Risk Manager

Up to £80000: Saxton Leigh: My client, a large commodities broker, is looking ...

COO / Chief Operating Officer

£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...

Senior BA - Motor and Home Insurance

£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...

Market Risk & Control Manager

Up to £100k or £450p/d: Saxton Leigh: My client is a leading commodities tradi...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments