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Facebook and Instagram’s ‘pay or consent’ ad model violates the DMA, says the EU

A graphic illustration representing the European Union flag.
Image: The Verge

The EU has formally charged Meta with violations of its Digital Markets Act (DMA), marking its second such charge in as many weeks. The European Commission writes in a preliminary ruling that the “pay or consent” advertising model that launched last year for Facebook and Instagram users runs afoul of Article 5(2) of the DMA by not giving users a third option that uses less data for ad targeting but is still free to use.

Regulators found in their investigation that Meta gives users a “binary choice” that forces them to either choose to pay a monthly subscription fee to get the ad-free version of Facebook and Instagram or consent to the ad-supported version. Where Meta runs afoul of its rules, it says, is by not letting users opt for a…

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