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Second Round of Litigation between KCC and Facebook Starts
KCC Files an Appeal with Seoul Court
Second Round of Litigation between KCC and Facebook Starts
  • By Jung Suk-yee
  • September 11, 2019, 09:10
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The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) has lodged an appeal against Facebook, entering another round of litigation with the U.S.-based social networking service company.

The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) lodged an appeal against Facebook on Sept. 6.

Earlier, Facebook filed a suit against the KCC to counter the imposition of a fine and the Seoul Administrative Court ruled on Aug. 22 that an arbitrary change in Internet connection route made by Facebook led to user inconvenience but it did not constitute any restriction of use and did not affect consumer interests to a large extent. The court also said that the KCC is responsible for proving whether the change in route actually had a considerable adverse effect on Facebook users’ interests.

The KCC, however, is saying that the enforcement decree of the Telecommunications Business Act stipulates the types of deeds considerably affecting consumer interests, including limiting or blocking the subscription to and use of a telecommunications service without any acceptable reason, and the court missed this point. “Although the court ruled that user inconvenience was caused without any restriction of use and connection to Facebook was not completely impossible, Facebook users could not use video and photo services due to the data traffic congestion at that time and this can be regarded as limitation,” the KCC explained.

Another point of controversy is whether Facebook could predict user damage in changing the route. “Facebook conducted usage monitoring in real time while communicating with at least one local mobile carrier to a sufficient extent, which means Facebook could predict the damage,” the KCC went on to say.

Facebook, in the meantime, refuted the argument that the user damage was intentional. “A decline in the number of customers attributable to a slower connection is damage to none other than ourselves,” it mentioned. With the litigation leading to controversies over why global content providers have used local communications networks free of charge, Facebook said that it has paid network fees through talks with local mobile carriers unlike the other content providers.