A judge granted the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) a second chance to pursue its charges of illegal monopolization against Facebook, rejecting the company’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit in a new filing on Tuesday, January 11, reported Reuters.
US District Judge James Boasberg granted Facebook’s earlier motion to dismiss over the summer, but allowed the FTC a chance to amend its complaint and try again, per Reuters. He also dismissed a similar lawsuit from a coalition of state attorneys general without granting a chance for reconsideration, though the states have indicated they intend to appeal that ruling.
“The Federal Trade Commission’s first antitrust suit against Facebook, Inc. stumbled out of the starting blocks, as this Court dismissed the Complaint last June,” Boasberg wrote in Tuesday’s filing. He said while the Commission’s core theory remains the same in its updated complaint, “The facts alleged this time around to fortify those theories, however, are far more robust and detailed than before, particularly in regard to the contours of Defendant’s alleged monopoly.”
Boasberg initially dismissed the FTC’s complaint because he said it failed to plausibly allege Facebook’s monopoly power in what it defined as the personal social networking services market. That market definition sought to exclude other social media platforms like YouTube, used primarily to watch videos, or LinkedIn, used for professional networking.
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