The Federal Trade Commission sued to break up Facebook on Wednesday, asking a federal court to force the company to sell off of assets such as Instagram and WhatsApp as independent businesses.
“Facebook has maintained its monopoly position by buying up companies that present competitive threats and by imposing restrictive policies that unjustifiably hinder actual or potential rivals that Facebook does not or cannot acquire,” the commission said in the lawsuit filed in federal court in Washington, D.C.
Facebook and several other major U.S. technology companies have grown extremely quickly over the past 10 years, and there has been little government oversight, so this announcement wasn’t a huge surprise.
And there’s another lawsuit against Facebook: the attorneys general from 48 states and territories said they were filing their own lawsuit against Facebook; their concern is about how much power Facebook and its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, have on the internet.
The AG’s suit doesn’t exactly ask for Facebook to be broken apart; it is asking a federal court to halt Facebook’s anti-competitive conduct in general and take any other action that the court sees fit.
“By using its vast troves of data and money, Facebook has squashed or hindered what the company perceived as threats,” New York Attorney General Letitia James said at a news conference announcing the states’ lawsuit, per NBC News.