Fb provided to create competitor to keep away from antitrust swimsuit: report
- The Washington Post reported that Facebook offered to give other tech companies access to its code through licensing agreements to help build a rival social media network.
- Facebook lawyers suggested the idea to state and state investigators days before they filed major antitrust lawsuits against the company.
- The U.S. Federal Trade Commission and 48 attorneys general filed a lawsuit against Facebook on Dec. 9 to break Instagram and WhatsApp.
- The suits signal a broader US effort to strengthen oversight and regulation over Facebook.
- You can find more stories on the Business Insider homepage.
Facebook may have offered to help competitors build a competing social media business to avoid antitrust allegations.
The Washington Post reported that Facebook has suggested signing licensing agreements with other companies, who in turn would have access to the Facebook code, to help build a competing social network. Facebook attorneys reportedly presented the idea to state and state investigators days before they filed major antitrust lawsuits against the company on Dec. 9.
The US Federal Trade Commission and 48 attorneys general filed lawsuits against Facebook for breaking Instagram and WhatsApp. The suits claim Facebook neutralized competitors before they got big enough to compromise the company’s dominance.
Continue reading: How Apple, Google and other browser manufacturers are quietly pondering the future of the web
The pressure to break open Facebook has increased in recent years. The European Union has been researching Facebook’s data practices and the marketplace platform since 2019. Four tech firms, two of which no longer exist, sued Facebook in January, urging Mark Zuckerberg to step down over anti-competitive strategies.
The attorneys general recently sued Google in part for allegedly entering into a contract with Facebook to provide the social network with unfair advertising benefits.
Representative David Cicilline, chairman of the House Antitrust Subcommittee, said Facebook should be disbanded after showing “classic monopoly behavior”.
In preparation for the FTC lawsuit, Facebook hired former government antitrust attorneys and launched internal initiatives that focused on “competition issues,” sources the Post said. Business Insider’s Rob Price reported that Facebook began hiring lawyers and policy experts in May 2019.
Continue reading: Google could already have been dissolved after strict EU plans for Big Tech: “What counts is enforcement.”
Facebook saw a decrease of 2 million daily active users in the US and Canada in the third quarter, but posted revenue of $ 21.5 billion over the same period.
Legal experts and Wall Street analysts doubt the court will dissolve Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, but told Business Insider’s Katie Canales that the suits signaled a broader government drive to strengthen oversight and regulation over big tech.