The Antitrust Suit against Facebook by the USA
A brief note on the issue
- Two lawsuits filed by the United States federal government and governments of 48 US states and territories have put under the scanner the acquisition by Facebook of Instagram and WhatsApp.
- The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC)’s lawsuit accused Facebook of eliminating competition with the acquisitions even though the FTC itself had approved the deals.
- The FTC has alleged that Facebook is illegally maintaining its personal social networking monopoly through a years-long course of anti-competitive conduct
- The US had also sued Google in an antitrust case for unlawfully maintaining a monopoly in general search services and search advertising
What is Antitrust law?
Antitrust law is designed to prevent firms from using anticompetitive business practices that stifle competition, thereby allowing the companies to dominate the market and hold monopoly power.
Examples of Antitrust suit in India
In 2019, India’s antitrust body had held Google guilty of misuse of its dominant position in the mobile Android market and said the company had imposed “unfair conditions” on device manufacturers to prevent them from using other operating systems. And in February 2018, the CCI had fined Google Rs 136 crore for unfair business practices in the online search market
Which authority enforce Antitrust law in India?
- The competition act 2002 provides basis to India’s antitrust law
- The Competition Act monitors any economic activity that monopolizes competition within the market; it aims to protect consumers and small enterprises, and ensures the freedom of trade.
- It is enforced by Competition Commission of India, it is now fully functional with a Chairperson and six members.