According to Reuters, four companies filed a lawsuit in the U.S. federal court on Thursday, accusing Facebook in anti-competitive behavior. They claim that the social network unreasonably revokes developer access to the company’s platform to harm potential competitors.
According to documents from the Northern California District Court, the plaintiffs sought class action and demanded some compensation.
‘Facebook faced an existential threat from mobile apps, and while it could have responded by competing on the merits, it instead chose to use its might to intentionally eliminate its competition,’ said Yavar Bathaee, a partner at law firm Pierce Bainbridge and co-lead counsel in the case.
The lawsuit filed an escalation of conflict between Facebook and small app developers. These developers rely on access to user data on the FB platform to build their company. In 2012, Facebook has banned data access for some apps, but other apps can still access platform data.
FB has not immediately responded to a request for comment from Reuters. But it said everything is not clear as many may think.
‘In the current environment, where plaintiffs’ attorneys see financial opportunities, claims like this aren’t unexpected but they are without merit,’ a Facebook spokesperson said in an email statement.
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It’s quite pertinent to say that Facebook is also facing potential antitrust investigations by regulators around the world. But this is only one episode. In fact, small developers have been always accusing FB in non-competitive behavior. Back in 2012, when a group of small app developers requested access to user data, Facebook cut off access for certain apps. But the social media king allowed access for others.