A PYMNTS Company

Facebook To Address Some US Antitrust Concerns With Photo Transfer Tool

 |  April 30, 2020

Facebook will allow users in the United States and Canada to transfer photos and videos to a rival tech platform for the first time – a step that could assuage antitrust concerns by giving users an option to easily leave the company’s services, the social media network announced on Thursday, April 30. 

According to Reuters, the tool lets Facebook users transfer data stored on its servers directly to another photo storage service, in this case Google Photos – a feature known as data portability.

US and Canadian users will be able to access the tool through their Facebook accounts starting Thursday. The function has already been launched in several countries including in Europe and Latin America. 

It allows the social media company to give users more control over their data and respond to US regulators and lawmakers who are investigating its competitive practices and allegations it has stifled competition. 

The US launch also comes ahead of a hearing set up by the Federal Trade Commission on September 22 to examine the potential benefits and challenges of data portability. Control of data that hurts competition has become a critical topic in the antitrust debate in the United States and Europe. 

Facebook’s Director of Privacy and Public Policy Steve Satterfield said over the past couple of years, the company heard calls from policymakers and regulators asking it to facilitate choice, make it easier for people to choose new providers and move their data to new services. 

“So it really is an important part of the response to the kinds of concerns that drive antitrust regulation or competition regulation,” Satterfield told Reuters in an interview.

Full Content: Reuters

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.