A French court has fined Google in one has to be has to be one of the most idiotic court cases I’ve ever heard of. The complaint was brought against Google by French company called Bottin Cartographes, who offers mapping services to businesses at a price. Google operates its Google Maps service in France offering similar mapping services at no cost.
The French mapping company didn’t appreciate the fact that Google is offering a similar product at no charge. The company filed suit in French court claiming that Google is abusing its dominant position in the market by offering Google Maps for free. According to reports, the French court actually upheld the complaint against Google and fined Google $660,000 for offering free Maps.
The $660,000 fine is damages to be paid to Bottin Cartographes and there is an additional fine of €15,000 dollar bringing Google’s total out-of-pocket expense for this debacle to $680,000. A spokesperson from Google France says that the search giant is currently studying the court’s decision is reviewing its options. I would imagine the studying of that court decision includes many WTF and OMG expletives.
The Google France spokesperson said, “[Google is] convinced that a free high-quality mapping tool is beneficial for both Internet users and websites.”