The US government along with 48 states have joined forces to sue Facebook and take away its Instagram and WhatsApp. The social media giant has faced several allegations in two separate lawsuits. In one it is accused of abuse of monopoly and the other one wants it to release its two triumphant assets.
If there’s anything the Democrats and Republicans agree on is that FB is a very powerful platform. With the acquisition of both social apps at the right time, the giant secured its long-standing future at the top of the social media chain. Now the US Government aims to break up Facebook and curb its overwhelming monopoly power.
What Allegations Facebook Is Facing For Its Monopoly Over Social Media?
The platform is accused of distorting rules of competition by suppressing innovation, cutting user privacy protocols, and data monetization. The government declared FB’s activities illegal as they brought harm to its customers and small businesses.
It is surely not hidden that this social media platform allows billions of users to exploit themselves on daily basis. In fact, exploitation was the core bases of its foundation. New York Attorney General, Letitia James is leading the fight against this corporate giant.
She also said that its acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp was predatory. The federal case demands total divestment of both these assets.
How Important Are Instagram and WhatsApp for Facebook
Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012 for 1 billion USD when it was only 2 years old and had 13 employees and 0 revenue. CEO Mark Zuckerberg realized how fast this photo app was growing. It could have become a potential threat to his social network if he didn’t buy it right way. Two years later it bought the other potential rival, WhatsApp for 19 billion USD. It was also not generating any revenue and had over 50 employees.
In the complaint, the AG said that the tech giant uses a buy-or-bury strategy with its rivals and frustrates the competition. As a result, users and businesses both suffer. Aspiring capitalists or new investors are scared to fund startups that are considered as a threat by Facebook which chokes the innovation and eventually the entire competition.
Monopoly of Facebook Explained
Social media users really do not have valid choices on the internet. What if someone doesn’t agree with Facebook’s privacy policies or get inflicted by all the misinformation on the platform? They do not have many options to go to cure their itch. They’ll either go to Instagram or WhatsApp which would be still Facebook, in another form of data monetization. Apart from the unfair competition issue, Facebook has a fair share of scandals like those of the Cambridge Analytica data breach.
Mark Zuckerberg is often seen apologizing for things Facebook did or did not do. Every time he promises to do better but nothing changes.
Facebook has become a barrier to competition in the social media business. Instagram has more than 1 billion monthly active users and WhatsApp has more than 1.5 billion. All who eventually contribute to the dangerous growth of Facebook.