The Federal Trade Commission and 48 attorneys general filed parallel anti-trust lawsuits against Facebook yesterday, alleging violations of federal and state anti-trust laws. The main charge is that buying WhatsApp and Instagram were aimed at removing market competitors to preserve Facebook’s ad monopoly. The long-expected suits may seek divestiture of the two acquisitions and other constraints.
Whether Facebook flicks off the anti-trust remains to be seen, but in the meantime it continues to expand its products. The latest addition is a shopping feature in WhatsApp, which will let users select items from a merchant’s catalog and send the order via WhatsApp message. Order processing and payments will be handled outside of WhatsApp.
Every channel wants to be a shopping channel these days. Interactive video platform WIREWAX has just launched a new app that lets Chromecast users pause streaming videos to see information and make purchases. Users can even “turn any paused frame into a playful shareable meme with creative graphic layers”. Some people must have a lot of time on their hands.
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