Facebook Plunges On Report FTC Preparing Possible Antitrust Lawsuit By Year End

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It’s been a rough day for Facebook: first the world’s biggest social network was dumped by Kim Kardashian who called on her tens of millions of global followers to boycott Mark Zuckerberg’s cash cow, and now the WSJ reports that the FTX is preparing to file a possible antitrust suit against the company, sending its stock plunging after hours, and dragging the Nasdaq lower.

The report reveals that the FTC has spent more than a year investigating concerns that Facebook “has been using its powerful market position to stifle competition” and may file a suit before the end of the year to challenge the company’s monopoly in social media. The inquiry is part of a broader antitrust effort by authorities examining the conduct of a handful of dominant tech companies.

The WSJ reports that the probe, which is in its late stages and which was previously discloses by the company last year, included taking testimony from Mark Zuckerberg, something the commission didn’t do during a prior probe of the company’s privacy practices, and which resulted in a record-breaking $5 billion settlement. In other words, this time around either the monetary penalty will be materially higher, or the FTC may in fact pull a Standard Oil on Facebook, and split up the company.

The key FTC concerns and questions revolves around Facebook’s prior acquisitions, “as well as about issues related to how Facebook manages its platform with regard to app developers.” For its part, Facebook has countered that its acquisitions aren’t anticompetitive and have improved products and experiences for its users, although in light of today’s market moving snub by none other than Kim Kardashian that approach may be in jeopardy. One almost wonders if Kim’s tweet and the WSJ report weren’t coordinated. – READ MORE

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