Facebook slammed an antitrust lawsuit Wednesday that was filed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in December, calling it an “unprecedented” attempt to “rewrite history.”
A pair of twin lawsuits were filed Dec. 9 by 48 attorneys general and the FTC accusing Facebook of a wide range of antitrust violations. Among other things, the lawsuits claim that Facebook has monopolized its power and unfairly eliminated competition in the market by using a variety of tactics. (RELATED: DOJ Sues Facebook, Alleges Company Discriminated Against US Workers)
“You only have to look at your phone to know that the government’s assertion that Facebook monopolizes ‘personal social networking services’ doesn’t make sense,” a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement. “People use TikTok, iMessage, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, YouTube and countless others to connect, discover, share, and communicate. Facebook competes with all of those services for people’s time and attention every day.”
AG Letitia James on Facebook’s motion to dismiss her antitrust lawsuit: “Facebook is wrong on the law and wrong on our complaint. We are confident in our case, which is why almost every state in this nation has joined our bipartisan lawsuit to end Facebook’s illegal conduct.”
— Audrey Conklin (@audpants) March 10, 2021
Facebook filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuits March 10. In its motion, the company argues that the lawsuit “ignores the reality of the dynamic, intensely competitive high-tech industry in which Facebook operates” and that the facts put forward by the FTC do not amount to a case of antitrust violations. (RELATED: Facebook Faces Class-Action Lawsuit For Collecting Texts, Phone Call Data)
Facebook pushes back on the allegation that it has monopoly power, saying in the motion that the FTC’s allegation that Facebook has 60% of the market share “must be disregarded because it is not supported by facts.” The company also argues that its acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp were not violations of antitrust law and that the FTC agreed that the acquisitions could proceed at the time.
The Facebook spokesperson said that since the acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp, “competition has only gotten more fierce, and consumers have benefitted enormously from Facebook’s investments in these free apps.”
“The government ignores these realities and attempts to rewrite history with its unprecedented lawsuit,” the spokesperson added.