Messenger, the messaging service linked to Facebook, is currently at the center of a legal battle between Meta and the European Union due to certain loopholes in its regulation. Europe, accusing Meta of gatekeeping due to its strategy concerning Messenger and Marketplace services, takes a starkly opposing stance against Zuckerberg’s company, which argues the situation as legitimate and inherent to Facebook’s chat service or user services within the same app.
For a long time, Facebook compelled users to download the Messenger app to chat with others on the platform, a practice that was irksome to millions of users. That’s why, aligning with the habits of the average user, it enabled the option for users to chat through Facebook without the need to install the Messenger service.
A legal issue
Meta has appealed its gatekeeper label both in the Messenger service and in the Marketplace, as they consider it unfair for a chat service that acts as a complement to Facebook, and a peer-to-peer service like Marketplace, in Meta’s view, neither deserving to be classified as gatekeeper.
Gatekeeping in the European Union implies that the technological services of a platform are regulated under a stricter framework, something that often limits the freedom of these platforms to prevent their excessive growth from risking the free market. This is crucial in markets across the continent, but Meta disagrees with the strict European rules and hence is challenging them.
Meta doesn’t know what to do with Facebook
Facebook is proving to be quite problematic for Meta because, over the past few years, it has been rapidly losing valuable activity and growth data, unlike Instagram, which hasn’t been affected. That’s why Meta is attempting to introduce many features that work on Instagram or other social networks in an effort to revitalize its service.
Among all the major apps today, Facebook has the lowest ratio of young users, which is troublesome considering they are among the most active groups on any social network. However, despite its stagnation, it remains a highly profitable app. That’s why, for instance, its logo change is nearly imperceptible—to minimize any confusion for its vast number of users.