Facebook accused of antitrust violations

Facebook accused of antitrust violations
Seth Tipps

By Seth Tipps

February 29th 2012 at 7:31PM

Lawyers claim the Facebook Credits program breaks antitrust laws

Two antitrust lawfirms have posted a webpage calling for legal action against Facebook over its manatory vitrual currency.

Newman|Duwors and Strange & Carpenter claim that Facebook, by booting out all virtual currency competition in favor of its own credits system, have unfairly raised costs and lowered services to gamers and developers.

The webpage says this may break antitrust laws.

The claim is detailed by the two firms in a whitepaper, which makes the case that the Facebook Credits program constitutes an illegal tying arrangement.

"The heart of an illegal tying arrangement is the use of a dominant position in one market to achieve success in a second," according to the whitepaper."

"Facebook is using its undeniable dominance as a social-gaming platform to ensure financial success as a virtual-currency provider."

Under the current policy, a developer must agree to the terms of the Facebook Credits program in order to publish games on the social networking platform. This, the firms claim, consitutes contractual coercion.

Though there is no antitrust suit at this time, the site calls for those affected to pursue legal action as their only recourse against Facebook's policy.