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Attorney General Frosh Announces Multistate Lawsuit Seeking to End Facebook’s Illegal Monopoly

Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh announced a bipartisan coalition of 48 attorneys general has filed a lawsuit against Facebook Inc., alleging the company illegally stifles competition to protect its monopoly power. The lawsuit alleges that over the last decade, the social networking giant illegally acquired potential competitors in a predatory manner and cut services to smaller apps, depriving users of the benefits of competition and reducing privacy protections and services. “Facebook manipulated the market and misused its monopoly power to the detriment of users,” said Attorney General Frosh. “Our lawsuit will bring the market back into balance, allow other businesses to compete and protect the privacy of millions of users.” Since 2004, Facebook has operated as a social networking service that facilitates sharing content online without charging users a fee. Rather, Facebook provides these services in exchange for a user’s time, attention, and personal data. Facebook monetizes its business by using the data it collects from users to deliver highly targeted advertising. To maintain its market dominance in social networking, Facebook employs a variety of methods to impede competing services. The two most utilized strategies have been to acquire smaller rivals and potential rivals before they could threaten Facebook’s […]

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