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The Associated Press reports that "Italy’s anti-trust authority on Thursday fined Amazon 1.13 billion euros ($1.3 billion), accusing the company of exploiting its dominant position against independent sellers on its website in violation of European Union competition rules.

"The fine is one of the largest leveraged in Europe against the online retail giant, which expanded in particular in Italy during a coronavirus lockdown that prevented residents from going to stores to buy items considered nonessential … Amazon said it 'strongly disagreed' with Italian regulator’s decision and would appeal, calling the fines and proposed remedies 'unjustified and disproportionate.' It noted that more than half of annual sales in Italy are from small and medium businesses that have access to other channels to sell their goods."

The story notes that the EU has been aggressive in regulating and fining big tech companies on antitrust grounds, and that "the push is gaining steam worldwide as regulators and lawmakers take on digital giants over accusations of everything from stifling competition to failing to prevent harmful content from appearing on their platforms."

KC's View:

Santa merda!  That's a lot of i soldi, even for Amazon.

The company has its hands full keeping up with all the complaints, charges, allegations and regulatory threats.

From the Washington Post this morning:

"Amazon doesn’t distinguish well enough between paid ads and organic search results, something that could trick consumers, according to a new complaint filed with the Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday.

"More than a quarter of search results on Amazon are paid ads, according to the complaint filed by the Strategic Organizing Center, a coalition of labor unions. But because the company doesn’t clearly label sponsored results, Amazon could be 'unlawfully deceiving' customers into clicking on them without knowing, a practice that raises questions about the integrity and quality of Amazon’s search results, the petition alleges."

Here's my question for 2022:  Will Amazon pay more in fines to various countries all over the world than it will pay to lawyers to fight these charges?