Now, Google has actually agreed not to eliminate third-party cookies till the CMA “is pleased that its competitors concerns have actually been dealt with.” The CMAs main concern is that phasing out third-party cookies in Chrome will offer Google an unreasonable advantage in the digital ad market (not that it doesnt arguably … supposedly? … have one currently).
Google also vowed to include the CMA and the Information Commissioners Office (the UKs data protection authority) to develop and evaluate Privacy Sandbox propositions. Google likewise pledged to more freely engage with 3rd parties and release test outcomes.
As you may recall, there was a big brouhaha early in 2015 when Google declared cohort-based marketing utilizing the now-retired Federated Learning of Cohorts API is 95% as reliable as cookie-based targeting. But Google didnt share information about its measurement methodology and how other companies could achieve similar outcomes.
( Eventually, it came out that Googles FLoC experiment relied on frequency capping connected to cookies and real-time access to cross-site publisher information, neither of which will be available when cookies go kaputski.).
Google also assured to limit the sharing of data within its own websites and apps and to not self-preference its own ad tech after eliminating third-party cookies.
A CMA-approved trustee (to be selected “shortly”) will be charged with keeping track of Google to make sure it sticks to the program.
If Google does not abide by its dedications to the CMAs complete satisfaction, the regulator reserves the right to “take additional action,” consisting of reopening its examination.
More info than you ever understood you desired or required about Googles last commitments is offered here.
” The dedications we have acquired from Google will promote competition, aid to secure the ability of online publishers to raise cash through marketing and secure users personal privacy,” Andrea Coscell, the CMAs primary executive, said in a declaration.
Googles “stranglehold”.
These decisions are central to how publishers and sites make money through online marketing … and some publishers are taking matters into their own hands.
Within an hour of (but separate from) the CMAs announcement about Privacy Sandbox, the European Publishers Council (EPC) submitted a formal antitrust grievance with the European Commission (EC) implicating Google of anticompetitive conduct in the digital ad market.
The European Commission has its own ongoing antitrust examination looking into Google allegedly preferencing its own ad products. That probe started in June 2021. The EPC said it expects for its complaint to form part of the ECs investigation.
The EPCs subscription includes the CEOs and chairs of some of the biggest media brand names in Europe and the world, amongst them News UK, Schibsted, The New York Times, The Guardian, Pearson, Conde Nast, Bonnier, Bauer Media and Axel Springer.
Christian van Thillo, the EPCs chairman, didnt mince words in a declaration released together with the grievance calling on the European Commission “to take concrete steps right now that will really break the stranglehold that Google has more than us all.”.
A lot of the accusations in the EPCs problem echo the claims set out in the Texas-led antitrust lawsuit, initially filed in December 2020, unredacted in October 2021 and then unredacted yet again in January.
The EPC implicates Google of actively depressing publisher earnings by preventing ad exchanges from competing against each other to increase costs. The higher rate averages that publishers have actually been able to achieve via header bidding, the grievance argues, just proves this point.
The grievance likewise calls Google out for its “supra-competitive” 20% fees on AdX, for eliminating the ability for publishers to set buyer-specific floors as part of the switch to a first-price auction in 2019 (which favored Googles advertisement purchasing tools) and for usually controling the auction (Project Bernanke, and so on).
Oh, and cant forget cookies.
The EPC keeps in mind that Googles plans to eliminate third-party cookies in Chrome “in the lack of an efficient replacement” could further diminish publisher income in the brief term by approximately 70%.
Think they do not have a great deal of faith in the Privacy Sandbox.

The CMAs main concern is that phasing out third-party cookies in Chrome will give Google an unreasonable benefit in the digital ad market (not that it doesnt probably … presumably? … have one currently).
The European Commission has its own continuous antitrust examination looking into Google presumably preferencing its own advertisement items. That probe kicked off in June 2021. The EPC said it anticipates for its problem to form part of the ECs examination.

What a world.
On Friday of recently, throughout less than 24 hours, the UKs competitors authority provisionally closed its investigation into the Chrome Privacy Sandbox and, separately, a coalition of top European publishers submitted an antitrust complaint in the EU implicating Google of anticompetitive digital advertising practices.
Never a dull moment. Heres a rundown of what happened.
Sandbox patrol
After examining Googles plan to phase out third-party cookies in Chrome for more than a year and months of backward and forward discussions, the UKs Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) accepted Googles modified commitments to resolve anticompetition concerns associated with the Privacy Sandbox.
These dedications are now lawfully binding and include updates based on feedback gathered late in 2015 from advertisement tech suppliers, marketers, publishers, trade orgs and academics. The advertisement market, in particular, was concerned that Googles original set of dedications to the CMA didnt include a strong adequate enforcement mechanism or supply enough transparency and clarity into Googles own use of data.