Facebook Can Be Sued For Using Users In Ads, Judge Rules

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If you live in California, and don’t like the way Facebook is using your likeness in ads, you can sue them. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be successful, but according to a report, a judge has dismissed Facebook’s motion to block such a suit, which could open the floodgates for more of them to come through.

Boomberg reports: “U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose rejected Facebook’s bid to dismiss the lawsuit on Dec. 16, ruling the plaintiffs may pursue claims that the company’s sponsored ads violate state law and are fraudulent. Koh granted Facebook’s request to dismiss a claim that it unjustly enriched itself with the sponsored ads.”

One has to wonder if Facebook’s reputation around privacy has anything to do with the judge’s decision.

In a recent piece, we asked if Facebook will make advertising too personal. Clearly, a lot of people think they already do, but Facebook hasn’t even added mobile to the equation yet (with an emphasis on yet), and the timeline feature was just made available to users.

The timeline encourages users to put their whole lives on Facebook. Even if you don’t put everything on there, it provides easier access to your personal history, and will no doubt encourage plenty of users to share a lot more info than they would have otherwise. It’s going to be very interesting to see how it plays into Facebook’s advertising offerings.

The timeline, by the way, was just rolled out to iPhone users over the weekend.

Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.