Meta loses legal dispute with European Commission over its request for document delivery

The tech giant Meta lost a legal battle before the European Court of Justice over the European Commission’s request for information to be turned up in order to look into possible anti-competitive behaviour by the Facebook group.

The second-highest court in the EU dismissed Meta Platforms Ireland’s lawsuit, finding that its legal arguments “proved to be unfounded.”

A press release from the court stated that “The court dismisses the action in its entirety.”

The EU executive ordered Meta to turn over all documents handled by three of its managers in 2020 that contained specific terms and issued a warning that failing to comply may result in a €8 million daily penalties.

On the grounds that the Commission had overstepped its bounds and that the required papers were either unnecessary or may violate employees’ privacy, Meta appealed to the court to set aside the ruling.

The search results included “very common words” like “big question,” “for free,” “shut down,” and “not good for us,” the court was told.

Meta stated that the Commission’s investigation was contrary to the concept of necessity, was not sufficiently clear or consistent, and would require the corporation to turn over a large number of confidential or unnecessary records.

According to Meta, the court heard that the documents obtained materials “containing private correspondence of employees concerning medical and autopsy reports and correspondence of employees at times of great personal distress”,

According to testimony given in court, the Commission’s initial request included 83 distinct questions on Facebook Marketplace, social networking sites, and online classified ad suppliers. According to the court, the Commission requested 729,417 papers in all.

Costs for Meta were mandated.

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