• Dennis McCaslin

Coalition lawsuit seeks to break up Facebook "monopoly power" over social media outlets

The Federal Trade Commission says it's seeking a permanent injunction in federal court against Facebook that could require divestitures of assets, including Instagram and WhatsApp.

The FTC and a coalition of 48 attorneys general have filed lawsuits against Facebook, accusing the company of illegally stifling its competition to protect its “monopoly power". according to the Associated Press.

The lawsuit also seeks to prohibit Facebook from imposing anticompetitive conditions on software developers and require the company to seek prior notice and approval for future mergers and acquisitions.

The legal action also charges that Facebook illegally acquired competitors in a predatory manner and cut services to smaller threats, depriving users from the benefits of competition and reducing privacy protections along the way.

They claim Facebook took these actions to boost its bottom line through increased advertising revenue.

The coalition's lawsuit, including 46-states, Guam the District of Columbia claims Facebook employs a variety of methods to impede competing services and “build a competitive moat” around the company.

The plaintiffs claim the two most utilized strategies have been to acquire smaller rivals and potential rivals before they can threaten Facebook’s dominance, as well as suffocating and squashing third-party developers that Facebook invited to utilize its platform.

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