In regards the the European Commission’s Statement of Objections (antitrust charges) issue, it seems that France has a case of not wanting to wait for it to resolve. France is taking action to regulate Google’s search results, as well as compel revelation of its search algorithm.
According to TechCrunch, a bill is being reported to be making it’s way through the French legislature.
According to an earlier Financial Times article (FT) about the bill:
The French senate is likely to adopt a bill this week which would allow the country’s national telecoms regulator to monitor search engines’ algorithms, with sweeping powers to ensure its results are fair and non-discriminatory . . .
If approved, the proposal would give Arcep, France’s telecoms regulator, powers to scrutinize any search engine that had sufficient power to “structure the functioning of the digital economy.” Google would be required to provide links to at least three rival search engines on its homepage, and disclose to users the “general principles of ranking.”
So why is France doing this? The rationale is that they want to bring more “fairness” to search results, as well as potentially supporting French technology companies. The TechCrunch story said this, “Another amendment stipulating that one of the alternative search engines on display should be a French product was also supported.”
Just because France is pushing to make this into law does not mean it will necessarily happen. Despite that, France is being quite aggressive and constant with their efforts to regulate non-European technology companies and Google in particular.