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Facebook Sued Over ‘Revenge Porn’ Page

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Facebook Sued Over ‘Revenge Porn’ Page
[ Social Media]

A Texas woman has filed a hefty lawsuit against Facebook, claiming that the social network failed to act quickly enough to remove a page where her ex had set up shop, posting fake nudes depicting her in “sexual acts.”

She is suing the company for $123 million, or as Texas Lawyer puts its, $0.10 per user – all 1.23 billion of them. For the record, Facebook now boasts over 1.32 billion active users per newest earnings report, so the claimant might want to amend the petition.

User counts aside, Meryam Ali claims that Facebook failed to remove the page, which featured the “true face of plaintiff attached to false, phony, naked body shots, and at least one pose where there is plaintiff in a graphic pornographic-like photo…purporting to be in the middle of a sexual act,” until the police became involved.

Ali says in her suit that she asked Facebook to remove the page as soon as she discovered it back in December – but Facebook didn’t get around to removing it until February. She claims that Facebook acted only when the Houston Police Department subpoenaed the company in the hopes of figuring out who was behind the page.

Not only is the plaintiff seeking “full justice for the significant trauma, extreme humiliation, extreme embarrassment, severe emotional disturbances, and severe mental and physical suffering,” but she’s particularly upset with Facebook’s practices.

The lawsuit ““seeks to expose the frailties and failures of the falsely advertised, and false promoted privacy mechanisms” of Facebook. Also, “Facebook’s upper management, officers, directors and key employees have long known about and essentially concealed…this lawsuit is intended…to get Defendant Facebook, it’s officers, directors, management, employees and subscribers (with media attention) to stand up, take notice and pay attention to the serious privacy violations concerns involved in revenge porn situations.”

Facebook’s content moderation system has had its fair share of negative press.

“Revenge Porn,” or publishing nude and sexual images or videos of an ex-lover online, has received a lot of attention as of late. Various states have signed anti-revenge porn bills into law, codifying penalties for those who upload the images and videos. As for punishing those who host the content – it’s a different story.

Though Ali’s situation involved fake nudes – photoshopped nude bodies paired with her actual face – it’s still revenge porn (admittedly a strange kind).

Texas doesn’t currently have a specific revenge porn statute, but Ali is bringing “negligence and breach of contract causes of action against Facebook, and gross negligence, intentional infliction of emotional distress and invasion of privacy causes of action against Facebook” for failing to remove the page in a timely manner. It’s clear she has a case, but it will be interesting to see how it plays out.

Image via Thinkstock

Facebook Sued Over ‘Revenge Porn’ Page


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