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1 minute ago, sblfilms said:

I’m curious how Facebook could be broken up in a way that benefits consumers. Is WhatsApp fundamentally better for consumers if owned by a different entity? This is an honest question for those who know much more about this stuff than I.

 

Yes, because Facebook owning Whatsapp increases the amount of your data being held by a single entity. 

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20 minutes ago, TwinIon said:

Don't get me wrong, I support breaking Facebook up, I just didn't think the FTC could prove a monopoly here, especially given current antitrust standards.

 

When it comes to Facebook, what do they have a monopoly in? Social networking? They can point to Twitter, Snapchat, YouTube, Reddit, Tik Tok, Pintersest, Linked In, and all the sites like WeChat that don't get as much play in the States. Then you get into messaging, where they clearly don't have a monopoly with competitors like iMessage, Telegram, and SMS/RCS. Then you have even more dubiously defined competitors when you get into things like Fortnite as a social space or email as internet communication. All this is why the FTC didn't really even define a market or Facebook's share of it.

 

Then you have the question of where they actually make their money, which is internet advertising, in which they're a dominant player, but not even the dominant player, and they have two trillion dollar plus companies (Amazon and Apple) coming for them. Additionally, Facebook would argue that internet advertising itself is only a subset of the larger advertising space, where they're really far from being a monopolist.

 

Which is all almost beside the point when the consumer welfare standard is still in place and you can't prove consumer harm because everything is free.

 

They have a near monopoly on Internet messaging services. Facebook messenger and WhatsApp combine for some 3.5b active users. Telegram is a small fraction of that and iMessage doesn't count here as an Apple-exclusive platform that mostly replaces SMS for iOS users. The only platform that even comes close is WeChat and their reach in the US is tenuous, at best. Facebook specifically bought WhatsApp to close the gap on messaging as WhatsApp was Facebook Messenger's only legitimate rival outside of China.

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1 minute ago, Jason said:

 

Yes, because Facebook owning Whatsapp increases the amount of your data being held by a single entity. 


Again, I don’t know much about this as I only use WhatsApp to talk to some of my Chinese business contacts on occasion, but isn’t WhatsApp an encrypted messaging client. I understand the sorts of data that FB is collecting, but what is WhatsApp collecting as an encrypted messaging client?

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3 minutes ago, sblfilms said:


Again, I don’t know much about this as I only use WhatsApp to talk to some of my Chinese business contacts on occasion, but isn’t WhatsApp an encrypted messaging client. I understand the sorts of data that FB is collecting, but what is WhatsApp collecting as an encrypted messaging client?

 

metadata 

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0b377bb77bb1ad5372ddcf7a839b4926.jpg
WWW.SOCIALMEDIATODAY.COM

WhatsApp is rolling out its controversial Privacy Policy update once again, which will see it share some information with parent company Facebook.


It’s not the end of the world, but it does seem like a genuine slippery slope thing. It’s only the beginning of what they probably have planned and it’s why Telegram and Signal are growing so quickly.

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1 minute ago, Ghost_MH said:

 

They have a near monopoly on Internet messaging services. Facebook messenger and WhatsApp combine for some 3.5b active users. Telegram is a small fraction of that and iMessage doesn't count here as an Apple-exclusive platform that mostly replaces SMS for iOS users. The only platform that even comes close is WeChat and their reach in the US is tenuous, at best. Facebook specifically bought WhatsApp to close the gap on messaging as WhatsApp was Facebook Messenger's only legitimate rival outside of China.


I understand that, I’m asking what is the benefit to consumers of WhatsApp being outside of Facebook?

 

Like, I can think of many specific reasons that Fox being outside of Disney was a benefit to consumers.

 

Things like availability of product, as Fox titles now reside under the stupid vaulting system of Disney.

 

Pricing as Disney dramatically increased the prices on Fox titles to all outlets besides D+.
 

Even product output as Disney has set Fox (and it’s affiliated entities) from 40ish titles a year down to 10-15.

 

Those things are explicitly negative to consumers as they pay more and get less product.

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15 minutes ago, sblfilms said:

I’m curious how Facebook could be broken up in a way that benefits consumers. Is WhatsApp fundamentally better for consumers if owned by a different entity? This is an honest question for those who know much more about this stuff than I.

 

Facebook is currently in the process of merging messaging between Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram. They've already added some really sketchy stuff to WhatsApp's EULA that brings it more in line with what an end user would expect to give Facebook rather than what should be a simple messaging app. Here's an example, one of the first things Facebook has done to WhatsApp to bring it in line with Facebook Messenger is allow anyone to add anyone to a group chat. This was done to facilitate Facebook's e-commerce push for WhatsApp. It also now gives WhatsApp the right to share contacts details on your phone with Facebook, regardless of whether or not they have an account. This is cool because Facebook just keeps having data breaches it just doesn't care about.

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2 minutes ago, Ghost_MH said:

 

Facebook is currently in the process of merging messaging between Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram. They've already added some really sketchy stuff to WhatsApp's EULA that brings it more in line with what an end user would expect to give Facebook rather than what should be a simple messaging app. Hers an example, one of the first things Facebook has done to WhatsApp to bring it in line with Facebook Messenger is allow anyone to add anyone to a group chat. This was done to facilitate Facebook's e-commerce push for WhatsApp. It also now gives WhatsApp the right to share contacts details on your phone with Facebook, regardless of whether or not they have an account. This is cool because Facebook just keeps having data breaches it just doesn't care about.


So it sounds like WhatsApp is going away in a similar way to what Disney did to Fox. It will eventually just be a name with the underlying property gone. This is helpful, thank you!

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10 minutes ago, sblfilms said:

So it sounds like WhatsApp is going away in a similar way to what Disney did to Fox. It will eventually just be a name with the underlying property gone. This is helpful, thank you!

 

Pretty much. Facebook announced years ago that, on its backend, they're all just going to be Facebook Messenger.

 

merlin_138613002_5724551d-f84c-457d-afc3
WWW.NYTIMES.COM

Facebook’s chief executive has asserted control over its sprawling divisions and mandated the social network’s messaging services be knitted together.

 

Facebook imagines a world where Facebook users can message WhatsApp users that can private message Instagram users. The data for its users will look the same to Facebook, regardless of the platform there coming in from, and that's why each platform's EULA was updated as such. The cool part is that this means the next time Facebook is breached and decides not to tell anyone about it, your data and all your friends' and family's data could be comprised as well since Facebook is storing it all in the same place. Facebook doesn't care because nobody is holding them accountable for any of the breaches they're experiencing. What did they say the last time they were breached? I think it was that nobody's data is truly safe online and that breaches happen all the time, so deal with it.

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23 hours ago, Ghost_MH said:

They have a near monopoly on Internet messaging services. Facebook messenger and WhatsApp combine for some 3.5b active users. Telegram is a small fraction of that and iMessage doesn't count here as an Apple-exclusive platform that mostly replaces SMS for iOS users. The only platform that even comes close is WeChat and their reach in the US is tenuous, at best. Facebook specifically bought WhatsApp to close the gap on messaging as WhatsApp was Facebook Messenger's only legitimate rival outside of China.

That's a really difficult market to define to a court though. You might not count iMessage, but Facebook's lawyers could probably successfully argue otherwise, same with SMS. Plus, tons of apps have messaging features built into them, from Twitter to Venmo to Google Photos. Speaking of Google, they're constantly launching messaging products. Then you have all the messaging platforms that Facebook is failing to compete against, like Slack and Teams. Yeah, you might think they're a clearly different market, but if you're talking about messages sent over the internet, it's not a stretch for Facebook to tell a court, "look at these innovative new products with millions of users that send messages over the internet that are demolishing our competing products."

 

So from a court's perspective, they have to be convinced not only that some very specific subset of messaging constitutes a definable market, but also that Facebook lacks competition in that market, that they stifle innovation, and that their monopoly status inflicts consumer harm. Given the number of apps that are constantly coming out that in some way include messaging features, I think there's a good argument to be made that innovation in the space continues. And again, when it comes to consumer welfare, the current standard is that the consumer is harmed when prices go up. Given that Facebook's purchase of WhatsApp only made it free, and both Facebook and many of it's competitors are free, there's no consumer harm here.

 

Now, if you could change that standard, then maybe there'd be a real case here, but under the current situation, I just don't see a court ruling against Facebook.

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The problem with handling anything nefarious that Facebook is doing is that it is extremely technical to the people who decide whether or not to regulate such things. We're basically relying on people whose experience is in very easy to understand entities like gasoline and media companies to determine what controls need to happen on an industry that is basically creating the industry they're supposed to monitor. We saw this during hearings where senators asked Zuckerberg basic questions about the Internet that their ten year old kids already could answer, yet they felt no shame in asking extremely stupid questions.

 

This is why I don't think we're going to end up in a better situation when we're done with all this. Either they're going to do nothing (because they don't know what to do or even understand the industry they're trying to maintain) or they're going to do drastic things that will hurt all types of innovation because they see 2030 solutions in the eyes of a 1950 mentality.

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  • 1 month later...

The FTC has refiled, but with a more targeted lawsuit...

 

GettyImages-1228818849-760x380.jpg
ARSTECHNICA.COM

FTC chair Lina Khan cast deciding vote in decision to refile.

 

This sounds better than their previous case. Also, I love the detail that Facebook bought Onavo, a VPN service, specifically to track its users and figure out which competitors they needed to squash.

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On 6/29/2021 at 1:16 PM, sblfilms said:

I’m curious how Facebook could be broken up in a way that benefits consumers. Is WhatsApp fundamentally better for consumers if owned by a different entity? This is an honest question for those who know much more about this stuff than I.

 

Well, I'd own an Oculus Quest if Facebook didn't own and required a Facebook login. I really don't want Facebook tracking VR usage or any device usage.

 

EDIT: Apparently I'm responding to a post as old as the first land animals. But maybe the response is still relevant :p 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Cool. Turns out Facebook's own oversight board (That is, the group FACEBOOK, themselves, created to prove they were fairly applying their moderation rules.) has no idea what Facebook actually is doing in terms of moderation since Facebook doesn't share information and lies to them.

 

GettyImages-1173369843-760x380.jpg
ARSTECHNICA.COM

Social media platform has come under scrutiny for moderation and enforcement policies.

 

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39 minutes ago, Kal-El814 said:


 

Social media was a mistake 

 

Here are their names...

 

Joseph Mercola

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

Ty and Charlene Bollinger

Sherri Tenpenny

Rizza Islam

Rashid Buttar

Erin Elizabeth

Sayer Ji

Kelly Brogan

Christiane Northrup

Ben Tapper

Kevin Jenkins

 

These people are, literally, responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths.

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Scientists:

4 years of undergrad

multiple years of grad school

PhD or MD

Years and years of research

Say "you should get the vaccine, it's fine."

 

Your stupid cousin on facebook:

"I need to do my own research first."

 

Sorry cousin, I didn't know you were planning on spending the next 10 years of your life dedicating all of your time studying vaccines and conducting studies verified by peer review.

 

Last time I brought up how fucking stupid that line of logic is, the person asked me what peer review was.

 

It's getting exhausting.

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