A federal judge ruled that Facebook(s fb) has the right to exclude users if they install a program that alters the look of its website and swaps out its ad offerings.
In a ruling issued Thursday in San Diego, U.S. District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo dismissed an antitrust complaint filed by Sambreel, a controversial advertising company that offers products with names like PageRage that let users tweak the look of their Facebook page.
“We are pleased by the decision,” said Facebook’s lead counsel, Craig Clark, in an email statement. Sambreel’s lawyers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The companies got in a bitter fight earlier this year after Facebook “gated” users who had downloaded the Sambreel products — meaning the users had to remove PageRage software before they could log on to the social network. Sambreel responded with an aggressive legal and public relations campaign, arguing that…
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