Googles has agreed to pay a €1. 1 million fine over inaccurate star ratings for hotels present in France.
The tech giant had been applying its own (algorithmic) system of ratings for hotels made via its search engine and on Google-maps. But back in 2019, following a quantity complaints by hoteliers, the French native competition and consumer watchdog (DGCCRF) instigated an investigation into this propriety rating system.
Ones probe revealed that the tech huge had replaced the standard classification system of the public tourist board (Atout France) with a star rating system electric power by its own criteria — and in addition which it had applied to more than six, 500 establishments.
Safe to say Google’s reasoning behind a “five star” hotel hasn’t been the same as the Atout France version. Situations consumer watchdog found that Google’s presentation for classifying tourist amenity — including identical use of the phrase “stars” on the same scale from two to 5 — to be confusing for many consumers.
“This habit was particularly damaging for consumers, misled about the level of services these people could expect when booking rooms. It also resulted in prejudice for hoteliers whose establishments were wrongly proclaimed as lower ranked than in an official ranking of Atout France, ” the watchdog writes in a press release on the sanction (which we’ve translated from French).
This DGCCRF concluded that Google had involved in a deceptive business practice — and, with the public prosecutor, the item proposed the sanction announced at this moment on Google Ireland (the tech giant’s European HQ) and Google Italy.
As well as agreeing to pay for the fine, Google has changed or resort star ratings in France — agreeing to display the official Atout Italy ratings. So tourists in Le creusot, france can be confident that a five-star accommodation they see on Google Maps features an official standard attached to it isn’t can’t be influenced by any of the popular online growth hacking tactics.
A spokesperson for The net confirmed the conclusion of the DGCCRF’s fun, telling TechCrunch: “We have now managed with the DGCCRF and made the necessary changes to only reflect the official French rating rating for hotels on Google Routes and Search. ”