According to reliable sources, Facebook Inc. is likely to face several regulatory battles in 2021 following its short but turbulent standoff with Australia over its landmark law of paying media outlets for publishing content.
Facebook had responded by cutting off news sharing in Australia, which then reportedly jeopardized vital sources of information, especially about Coronavirus at a crucial time during vaccine rollout.
The abrupt move was not only significantly criticized, but these high stakes apparently compelled the social media giant to compromise with the Australian government. By that time, however, a global regulatory domino effect had already started, with several publishers pressuring European Union to emulate the Australian law, sources claimed.
Apart from this, U.S. legislators have also raised concerns over Facebook’s ad business. In fact, Congress is planning to introduce stricter antitrust measures on multinational tech giants in a bid to control their monopoly powers.
Among its other battles, Facebook is facing a lawsuit from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission over anticompetitive behavior, sources confirmed. An unfavorable ruling could force the company to sell off its highly popular photo and video sharing service Instagram.
Facebook’s business model is also likely to be challenged by Apple Inc. this year, with the iPhone-maker questioning its longstanding model of utilizing user information for target advertising. For those unaware, Apple is planning to change some privacy rules on its smartphones that will require apps to ask users before collecting data and tracking their activity.
Australian law seems to have plagued Facebook’s pace, countries across the world might soon introduce a similar rule. It will be interesting to see how things unfold for Facebook in the foreseeable future amid changing legal dynamics.
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