German publishers push third-party cookies

Google Started the week with another complaint.

This time, it is a group of German publishers and advertisers who are demanding that the European Union (EU) stop the search giant’s plan to end the use of third-party cookies, The Financial Times reported on Monday (January 24).

political editor axel jumper and hundreds of publishers, advertisers and media groups have filed a complaint with Margaret Vestager, the European competition commissioner. He alleges that Google is breaking EU law with its decision to remove third-party cookies from the Chrome browser within the next year.

The result, critics said, will prevent advertisers, publishers and others from analyzing users’ preferences as they browse content online. It would be murder how the sectors generate income, they allege.

Axel Springer was joined by others, including the German Federal Association of Digital Publishers, according to a 108-page complaint. They argue that Google’s planned changes will hurt their business by allowing the search giant to collect user data in a way that won’t hurt their ad-based search business.

The complaint is the latest effort to try to force an investigation into Google, which could result in fines of up to 10% of global revenue. The tech giant has already received more than 8 billion euros ($9 billion) in fines in three different antitrust cases since 2012.

In response, Google said that many other platforms and browsers have stopped supporting third-party cookies, while Google is the only one to do so openly and in consultation with regulators.

The complaint comes as the Senate Judiciary Committee voted last week to advance the America’s Online Choice and Innovation Act. The bipartisan measure is intended to prevent Big Tech companies from favoring their own services over others.

Read more: Big Tech’s Three Biggest Regulatory Threats

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