APIs available to third-party applications only on the condition that they refrain from developing competing functionalities and from connecting to or promoting other social networking services.”
In addition to the FTC, the Commission will be joined by participating Attorneys General from Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Columbia District, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Jersey.
If the case is successful, the possible effects on Facebook could be large. The FTC hopes that the federal court will rule that some of its properties, including Instagram and WhatsApp, must be disposed of by the corporation. It also aims to compel Facebook to offer advance notice – and obtain approval – of any potential mergers and acquisitions.
The FTC also wants the court to rule that Facebook must avoid “imposing anti-competitive conditions on software developers” such as those aimed at using its APIs.
“Personal social networking is central to the lives of millions of Americans,” said Ian Conner, Director of the Competition Bureau of the FTC. “Facebook’s actions to entrench and protect its monopoly deprive customers the advantages of competition. Our mission is to roll back the anti-competitive actions of Facebook and restore competitiveness so that creativity and free competition can flourish.”