Facebook must face the government’s monopoly lawsuit alleging that the company abused its dominance, a judge ruled.
By David McLaughlinBloomberg
Published January 11, 202211 January 2022
Meta Platforms Inc.’s Facebook must face the U.S. government’s monopoly lawsuit alleging that the company abused its dominance and should be broken up, a judge ruled.
U.S. District Judge James Boasberg in Washington rejected Facebook’s proposal to dismiss the Federal Trade Commission’s revised antitrust complaint, which the agency re-filed after the judge in June dismissed the case. Boasberg said in his ruling that the FTC’s claims are “more robust and detailed.”
“The FTC has now claimed enough facts to likely establish that Facebook is exercising monopoly power,” the judge wrote. “The agency has also explained that Facebook not only has monopoly power, but that it has deliberately maintained that power through anti-competitive behavior.”
The decision is a major win for the FTC and President Lina Khan, who took over the case when she was appointed to head the agency by President Joe Biden. The FTC filed the new complaint in August with new details to bolster the agency’s claim that Facebook has a dominant market share in the U.S. personal social networking market and has the power to rule out competition. The case requires a court order to settle Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp.
The case is U.S. Federal Trade Commission v. Facebook Inc., 20-3590, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
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