Economic Liberties’ Statement on Judge Boasberg’s Decision in Facebook Cases
Washington, D.C. – The American Economic Liberties Project issued the following statement in response to a pair of decisions from U.S. District Court Judge James Boasberg to dismiss a complaint brought by the Federal Trade Commission that challenged Facebook’s unlawful and anticompetitive behavior, as well as a case brought by a coalition of 48 state and territorial attorneys general.
“Judge Boasberg’s decision clearly underscores why Congress must pass bright-line standards to guide courts as they judge unfair methods of competition,” said Sarah Miller, Executive Director of the American Economic Liberties Project. “The coalition of state attorneys general should appeal today’s decision and the Federal Trade Commission should quickly submit an amended complaint. Policymakers should also quickly pass legislation such as New York’s SB933, which would prevent dominant corporations like Facebook from abusing their power.”
“Congress must also act,” said Miller. “It is time to acknowledge the consumer welfare antitrust standard is a failed project. Last week, Senator Mike Lee, the Senate’s strongest defender of the antitrust status quo, said, ‘The idea that Big Tech operates in a functioning free market can no longer be taken as a serious position.’ Today, Judge James Boasberg dismissed the allegation that Facebook has dominant market power, saying, ‘It is almost as if the agency expects the Court to simply nod to the conventional wisdom that Facebook is a monopolist.’”
The American Economic Liberties Project works to ensure America’s system of commerce is structured to advance, rather than undermine, economic liberty, fair commerce, and a secure, inclusive democracy. Economic Liberties believes true economic liberty means entrepreneurs and businesses large and small succeed on the merits of their ideas and hard work; commerce empowers consumers, workers, farmers, and engineers instead of subjecting them to discrimination and abuse from financiers and monopolists; foreign trade arrangements support domestic security and democracy; and wealth is broadly distributed to support equitable political power.