Unequal Treatment by Online Platforms: A Structured Approach to the Abuse Test in Google

GCLC Annual Conference Series (Louvain-la-Neuve, Bruylant 2017, Forthcoming)

22 Pages Posted: 7 Aug 2016

See all articles by Renato Nazzini

Renato Nazzini

King's College London – The Dickson Poon School of Law

Date Written: July 27, 2016

Abstract

This paper discusses the requirement for legal certainty in the enforcement of the abuse of dominance prohibition in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and the approach that should be taken, under the current legal framework, to the assessment of the alleged conduct by Google consisting in displaying links to specialised results from its own comparison shopping services differently to links to competing vertical comparison shopping services. The author challenges the view that concepts such as "competition on the merits" or "special responsibility" can be a sufficiently certain legal basis for imposing liability on dominant undertakings. The idea of "unequal treatment" or "discrimination" is also inapt to the analysis of the alleged anti-competitive strategy. Having examined the tests that, under Article 102, could apply to the alleged conduct, the paper concludes that the refusal to supply test appears to provide the closest analogy for its assessment under Article 102 TFEU.

Keywords: Abuse of dominance, legal certainty, test, refusal to supply, Google investigation, European Union

Suggested Citation

Nazzini, Renato, Unequal Treatment by Online Platforms: A Structured Approach to the Abuse Test in Google (July 27, 2016). GCLC Annual Conference Series (Louvain-la-Neuve, Bruylant 2017, Forthcoming). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2815081

Renato Nazzini (Contact Author)

King's College London – The Dickson Poon School of Law ( email )

Somerset House East Wing
Strand
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
236
Abstract Views
763
rank
130,548
PlumX Metrics