For the most part, Facebook and Google prevent you from using their products if you decline to agree to their entire terms of service. You cannot pick and choose what to agree to and still use their free services.


Many of the companies' difficulties stem from the European Union's tough new stance on privacy. The biggest threat to their business model comes from the General Data Protection Regulation, new data privacy rules set to go in effect in the EU in May... There are 734 million EU residents who will soon be able to opt out of helping Facebook and Google make money. If companies do not comply with the new regulations they will face fines totaling four percent of their global revenues.


But GDPR isn't the only trouble ahead for Facebook and Google. There are also myriad investigations underway into allegedly abusive practices by the firms.

After fining Google a record $2.8 billion in 2017 for prioritizing its own products over competitors in its online search results, the EU's competition commission continues to investigate the company for allegedly abusing its market dominance in the mobile phone market through its Android operating system. Germany's antitrust commission issued a preliminary report in December stating that Facebook uses its dominant position to place unfair conditions on its users by combining data from the Facebook main site with data retrieved from third party sources through its "like" button. In December, France gave Facebook one month to stop combining data from its WhatsApp platform with its Facebook platform without user consent or face sanctions and fines. Ireland's antitrust enforcer has also investigated Facebook for sharing WhatsApp data without user consent.

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