A Federal Court judge has labelled the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s action against Google “opaque and repetitious”, asking it to clarify its claims.
In what is touted as a world-first action, the ACCC has accused Google of not doing enough to differentiate its organic search results, ranked by relevance, from the sponsored links that appear at the top of its results page.
The lawsuit was announced in July with the consumer advocate alleging Google and The Trading Post (owned by Telstra subsidiary Sensis) contravenes the Trade Practices Act by representing an association with another business when one doesn’t exist.
The ACCC is seeking injunctions that would restrain Google from publishing such sponsored hyperlinks. Google continues to deny any misconduct and the case is adjourned till October 4.