FTC seeks to view competition through privacy lens with revised Facebook case

New Ideas in MarketingEssential news for marketers, summarised by YouGov
October 07, 2021, 5:24 PM UTC

The Federal Trade Commission has revised its antitrust case against Facebook's monopoly.

Filed in August this year, the updated version of the case states that Facebook engaged in activities that misused or mishandled user data and degraded the overall user experience. Moreover, the tech company's ability to decrease product quality without losing significant user engagement indicates Facebook's overbearing market power.

This move from the FTC comes at a time the agency is trying to establish that monopoly harms the tech industry, especially user privacy and data use. In a motion to dismiss the agency's updates complaint, Facebook has argued that past privacy concerns fail to establish monopoly power. The California-headquartered company also pointed out that the FTC was yet to establish what a competitive baseline for privacy or quality of social media services looks like.

According to FTC chairwoman Lina Khan, concentrated control over data enables dominant firms to capture markets and establish entry barriers. Such capabilities then allow these firms to degrade privacy without consequences.

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