Facebook's battle with the Federal Trade Commission was deemed a win earlier this week. While the FTC took Facebook to court over antitrust concerns, the social media company escaped unscathed.
The battle aimed to tackle the company's allegedly monopolistic hold on the social media industry. Facebook's ownership of their title social media site, WhatsApp, Instagram and other companies were pulled into question.
Facebook vs FTC. Antitrust Round 2?
Following the FTC's loss, multiple US lawmakers banded together to urge the commission to continue the fight. Reported by The Verge, senators Amy Klobuchar and Mike Lee as well as House representatives David Cicilline and Ken Buck wrote to the commission to try again.
“It is essential that the Commission take action to deter anticompetitive conduct by digital monopolists by ensuring that they are held liable for antitrust violations to the full extent of the law.”
The FTC has until June 29th to refile a complaint against the social media conglomerate. However, this time around the commission has to offer more than just “the naked allegation" of Facebook's wrongdoings.
If the commission does intent to file against Facebook again, they'll have to provide substantial evidence. While the previous attempt left hasn't underwhelmed at the commission’s performance, there's still chance for a do-over.
The last attempt
In an article by MarketWatch, legal experts claim the recent antitrust battle was handled poorly. The Federal Trade Commission's earlier case did not provide substantial evidence that Facebook has a social media market dominance. However, they could come back bigger and stronger.
Carl Szabo, vice president of NetChoice, says the case was poorly presented. He said: “It’s hard for the FTC to have presented a worse case. As every prosecutor knows, and as the judge made clear, the FTC need to present facts, not feelings,”
Szabo’s company is funded by Facebook, context that seems appropriate considering their next statement:
“I hope the FTC learned their lesson and avoids further embarrassment by dropping this suit altogether. But I worry that the power of belief will overcome the rational recognition that perhaps the FTC should take the loss and move on to a real problem that has actual consumer harm.”