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Yelp and TripAdvisor Challenge Google's Search Supremacy in Europe

In an ongoing battle to control top results, Yelp launches "Focus on the User."

Crowdsourced review site Yelp is continuing its rivalry with search giant Google — and this time, they're doing battle overseas. The Financial Times reports Yelp will join forces with TripAdvisor to launch a "Focus on the User" campaign in Europe, accusing Google of giving preference to its own content (like Google Places) when users seek information about restaurants. In a glossy video campaign, Focus on the User argues that "Google is hurting the internet. Europeans have the power to stop it."

In July, Google responded to similar claims by Yelp made stateside, releasing an update that finally delivered Yelp results when a user searched "Restaurant Name + Yelp" in Google. (Previously, Yelp alleges, Google would give preference to its own pages, sometimes with Yelp.com not showing up until the second Google results page.) Google and Yelp have been jostling for position since 2009, when a reported $500 million acquisition abruptly fell through (at one point, Google even ran deceptive ads for Zagat, labeling them as links to Yelp.

Google is currently the subject of an antitrust investigation in Europe, to which "Focus on the User" is timing its lobbying efforts. According to the FT, Google promised to "give competitors a better showing [in search results], but denied any wrongdoing."

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