October 5, 2022

Meta Platforms has urged dismissal of an promoting competitor’s case on two grounds: the primary for failure to state a declare and the second for settlement to an arbitration clause, requiring that Metroplex Communications Inc. arbitrate its competitors grievances moderately than deliver them in court docket.

As beforehand reported, the case accuses Meta of touting its Fb and Instagram promoting merchandise as simpler than they had been. The upshot, the go well with claims, is that promoting clients had been duped into believing that they might attain a bigger viewers than they really might. 

Like one other class motion which not too long ago achieved class certification, Metroplex says that the corporate overestimated the variety of month-to-month energetic customers, additional padding its statistics to attract in potential advert area purchasers.

Metroplex, which purportedly competes with Meta by promoting adverts for radio stations and different media retailers in Illinois, alleges that Meta misled advertisers into buying adverts on Meta’s providers as an alternative of on plaintiff’s native web sites and radio stations, diverting enterprise it could have attracted.

Its criticism states claims for aid beneath the Lanham Act, claiming that Meta’s Securities and Change Fee (SEC) statements relating to its person base and promoting attain represent false representations.

In a pair of filings final week, Meta mentioned it shouldn’t need to face the case in court docket if in any respect. In its dismissal bid, Meta claimed that “not one of the statements [Metroplex] complains about is an advert, a lot much less a false advert that harmed Plaintiff.”

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Additional, Meta argued that Metroplex neither raises believable inference of damage as a competitor nor can Metroplex show that Meta channeled enterprise away from it. To this finish, Meta mentioned that “[t]right here isn’t any causal connection between the challenged statements in Meta’s SEC filings and describing particular person advertisers’ advert campaigns, on the one hand, and Plaintiff’s enterprise promoting adverts for radio stations and different information retailers in Southern Illinois, on the opposite.”

Lastly, Meta added that the claims are time-barred by the Lanham Act and Illinois corollary legislation’s three-year statute of limitations. The corporate ventured that Metroplex depends on statements made in 2018 and earlier, plus has no foundation to toll the clock.

As to Meta’s movement to compel arbitration, the defendant claimed that Metroplex itself purchased promoting from Fb to market its personal promoting gross sales to native radio stations. As a signatory to its phrases, Metroplex purportedly agreed to binding arbitration, Meta mentioned.

Metropolex is represented by Goldenberg Heller & Antognoli P.C. and Margulis Gelfand LLC. Meta Platforms is represented by Latham & Watkins.