The new FTC will be led by President Lina Khan, a vocal critic of Big Tech who first gained notoriety when she argued that price-centric no-confidence laws were not enough to test Amazon’s strength. However, the FTC had another chance in the case, but the judge dismissed the separate cases filed by the 48 states that competed for the takeover of Facebook’s Instagram and WhatsApp, saying they had waited too long to present their case. He noted that this deadline did not exist for the FTC, which could investigate the consolidation at any time, believing that it had any reason to do so.
Facebook and its investors have hailed the decision as a victory. Following the decision, the company’s share price rose 4.2%, bringing its market capitalization to more than $1 trillion for the first time in history. On Monday, a U.S. district court dismissed a lawsuit filed against the company by the Federal Trade Commission and suffered a major blow in a federal government no-confidence lawsuit against Facebook. The lawsuit, filed late last year, sought to expose Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp. The judge also dismissed a lawsuit filed by a group of state attorneys general.
In a preliminary complaint, the FTC alleges that Facebook violated federal antitrust laws by buying competitors in the social media market. However, in a decision to dismiss the allegations on Monday, Judge James E. Bosberg wrote that the FTC had provided insufficient evidence to support its central claim – Facebook has exclusive powers. “The FTC has failed to provide sufficient information to establish the proper information required for all of its Section 2 claims – for example, Facebook has exclusive power in the marketplace for personal social networking (PSN) services,” Bossberg wrote.
“The allegations have nothing to do with the score that the company has except for the nude allegations and still have a ‘dominant share’ of the market (over 60%).”