An article in Today's Wall Street Journal describes how Google has been using customer reviews from other sites to beef up its Google Places service:
Google Inc. has made changes to the way its search engine displays information about local businesses, a move that follows the disclosure of a U.S. antitrust investigation of its business practices.
The company said it removed snippets of customer reviews that were taken from other Web firms for its Google "Places" service, which has millions of pages for local businesses. Google's practices have drawn fire from some of those Web companies, and is believed to be among the issues the Federal Trade Commission is investigating.
Since last year, TripAdvisor, Yelp and Citysearch—sites with local-business reviews generated by their visitors—have complained Google effectively stole their content and posted it on Google's own pages. Google Places competes with those sites and provides information on millions of restaurants, hotels and other businesses, including store hours, location and photos.
Following Thursday's change, Google Places showed a marked decline in the number of reviews listed for some businesses. For example, Keens Steakhouse in New York displayed 60 reviews Friday, compared with more than 3,000 last month.
While some rivals welcomed the change, they continued to support the antitrust investigation into Google and complained the company still gives preferential placement to Google Places over links to their sites in search results.
I don't know how to describe this as anything other than stealing. Note also the allegation that Google manipulates search results to favor Google Places. (That Google doctors what it claims to be "unbiased" search results was publicly admitted by a top Google executive quite some time ago.) You can read the rest here.