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Google Antitrust Deadline “A Matter of Weeks,” Says EU Commission

A microphone stands in front of a Google logo during a press annoucement at Google headquarters in New York, May 21, 2012. AFP PHOTO/Emmanuel Dunand (Photo credit should read EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/GettyImages)

Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/GettyImages

The European Commission, looking at whether Google has given preferential treatment to its own services in its search results, has given the tech giant a deadline.

EU antitrust case head Joaquin Almunia says the company needs to “offer remedies” within a matter of weeks, if it doesn’t want to face formal action in an investigation that began in 2010 after complaints from competitors.

The areas of contention in the case include the way Google displays search results, how it uses content from other sites within its own services, and restrictions it puts on advertising content that prevents advertisers from using other platforms.

A representative for Google said that while the company disagreed with the conclusions, it would work to resolve the matter, pointing out that since the inquiry began, Google has faced “tremendous” competitive pressures.

Bing’s recent move to fold Facebook information into its search results would seem to justify that suggestion. But where else is the competition coming from … Ask Jeeves?