Friday, September 13, 2013

Facebook Settlement Finally Reached, Your $15 Check May Be In The Mail Soon

Remember a few years back when Facebook was hit with a class-action lawsuit over "sponsored stories." At the time of the lawsuit you may have been emailed a form to be a participant entitling you to a part of the cash award. After more than two years of deliberation, a U.S. federal judge in California has finally granted final approval for Facebook’s $20 million settlement, entitling those of you that didn't trash those emails to a minor monetary settlement.

The suit filed in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, is Angel Fraley et al., asserted that Facebook improperly used photos and names found on user profiles in Sponsored Story ads, which are created by users “liking” companies’ pages or content. The plaintiffs also argued that Facebook violated a California law that forbids companies from using people’s likenesses or names in advertisements without their consent. Finally, the suit asserted that Facebook should have received parental consent to use the names and likeness of any user under the age of 18.

Under the terms of the settlement, Facebook will pay $20 million to compensate class members, approximately $11 million of that will be doled out to the attorney's . Leaving behind roughly $9 million to be divided amongst the approximately 614,000 Facebook users who appeared in Sponsored Stories without their consent, and filed the necessary paperwork to join the class action lawsuit by the May 2, 2013 deadline. In addition to the monetary payment Facebook also promised to give users more control over how their content is shared.

See the full order of final settlement below:

Fraley v. Facebook: Order Granting Final Approval (Document 359)

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