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FTC’s Deadline To Amended Facebook Complaint Is This Week

 |  August 17, 2021

The US FTC may have a second chance to prove to a federal judge that Facebook has illegally maintained a monopoly, reported CNBC.

By Thursday, the agency must file an amended complaint if it wishes to continue pursuing its claims against Facebook in federal court.

Related: Judge OKs Extension For FTC To Refile Facebook Suit

That’s because a judge threw out the FTC’s initial complaint, saying it didn’t do enough to show that Facebook illegally maintains monopoly power to warrant moving the case forward. But, he left the FTC an opportunity to make a stronger case in a new filing.

The FTC has a couple options on how to proceed besides choosing to file an amended complaint. It could decide to drop the matter altogether. Or it could bring the case before its internal administrative law judge instead.

The former seems unlikely given the scale of this case for the agency and its newly-confirmed Chair Lina Khan, who has been critical of digital platforms and has pushed for greater enforcement of antitrust laws.

The latter is made more complicated by the fact that Facebook has called for Khan’s recusal from its case based on her past criticism. Khan hasn’t responded to the request, but assuming she wants to participate in the case, that would likely be easier to do if her participation involves voting on whether to file a complaint in federal court, rather than act as an adjudicator under the FTC’s internal process.

Here’s what the FTC needs to address in its amended complaint if it hopes to continue its fight with Facebook in federal court.

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