FTC, 48 States File Lawsuits to Break Up Facebook

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull would "love" Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg -- seen here at the US Congress -- to be grilled by Australian lawmakers
CHIP SOMODEVILLA/Getty

The FTC and 48 states are set to launch a legal assault on Facebook over claims of antitrust violations. The lawsuits seek to break up Mark Zuckerberg’s social media empire.

Politico reports that federal antitrust authorities and dozens of states are set to launch a double-barreled legal assault against Facebook over allegations of antitrust violations. Both lawsuits aim to force Facebook to break up its empire which includes messaging service WhatsApp and photo-sharing app Instagram.

Attorneys general from 48 U.S. states and territories, including New York, are behind one of the suits that was first hinted at last week. The second suit filed by the FTC is set to be filed later this afternoon.

The cases accuse Facebook of illegally using its power for more than a decade to push out rivals and buy out rising competitors, noting WhatsApp and Instagram as specific examples of this. Facebook has continued to purchase multiple companies despite recent scrutiny, Breitbart News recently reported on Facebook’s purchase of the customer service startup Kustomer in a deal valued at more than $1 billion.

The suit is part of the latest escalation in the power struggle between world governments and U.S. tech firms. In October, the Justice Department and a smaller group of U.S. states filed a similar antitrust lawsuit against Google.

Facebook has denied being a monopoly, noting that it ranks behind Google in how much revenue it takes from the $160 billion global market for online advertising. Google and Facebook maintain a duopoly over the online advertising market. Facebook currently has 2.74 billion users worldwide and disclosed in July 2019 that the FTC was investigating it for alleged antitrust violations. New York States attorney general, Tish James, announced two months later that she was leading a multistate coalition probing antitrust concerns of Facebook.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address lucasnolan@protonmail.com

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.