In this digital age we are bombarded with spam emails claiming you’ve won a trip or money. In fact I’d bet that anyone who has had an email account for more than a year and hasn’t received one of these is either lying or doesn’t realize their email provider has a spam filter.
The Facebook email in focus is titled “Re: LEGAL NOTICE OF SETTLEMENT OF CLASS ACTION”.
According to Forbes around 125 million Facebook users received the notice as suggested by court filings.
Of course unknowingly, the majority of people will/have tossed the email directly in the trash and disregarded is as nothing but a fraud that got past the filters.
It’s the real deal and not a malicious ploy to get access to your bank account or other information reports Forbes. It actually originates from a lawsuit from 2011 known as “Fraley vs. Facebook”. The issue was that the social networking giant decided to put some of it’s users in “Sponsored Story” ads. These ads pertained to what users “liked” but didn’t necessarily reflect to opinion or context in which someone “liked” something.
3 months after Facebook launched the “Sponsored Story” ads a group of plaintiffs led by seamstress Angel Fraley sued Facebook claiming that it was against the law to use their names and likenesses in ads without permission, and without payment. Facebook responded by having their lawyers dig up embarrassing material from Fraley’s account and thus she walked away.
The incident resulted in a settlement of $20 million that was agreed upon in December between the plaintiffs and the social networking website.
Fast forward to now where most people don’t have a clue about the legitimacy of this email. A decent amount of money announced in the settlement will cover the class action lawyers and the remains will be divided up to the Facebook members who appeared in the “Sponsored Story” ads. Now I know you’ve already or are just about to scramble to your inbox and dig through the trash/spam but sadly enough, you won’t be hitting it rich even if you did receive an email. You will only get maximum $10. If there are too many people claiming the settlement or if the amount that each person will receive is less than $5, then it will instead go to a bunch of non-profit organizations that deal with privacy issues.
After the lawyers are paid there will be about $12 million left and even though it’s not a lot of money for each user, it’s likely that the payments will end up going to the non-profits.
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