Facebook sued by Colorado man who claims he never 'liked' USA Today
Facebook is being sued by a user who claimed he never "liked" USA Today, though his friends have seen ads on the social network that suggest he did.
Anthony "Tony" DiTirro of Colorado recently filed a class action lawsuit against Facebook, seeking at least $750 for himself and any other user who has popped up in ads for products and pages they haven't "liked" or endorsed. A California law lets people seek this amount when someone uses their image without direct permission.
The complaint, filed in San Jose, California, stated that DiTirro's friend first spotted the ad on Facebook. He told DiTirro that the ad touted his endorsement. Specifically, the ad showed DiTirro had “liked” the food section of USA Today (as seen in the screenshot above).
According to the complaint, DitTirro has never "liked" USA Today's Facebook page or even visited the publication's website: “Although PLAINTIFF has nothing negative to say about USA TODAY newspapers, PLAINTIFF is not an avid reader of USA TODAY, nor does PLAINTIFF endorse the newspaper,” stated the complaint.
Facebook's use of this false endorsement, especially without permission, is, apparently, a violation against several federal laws that protect privacy and publicity rights. Check out Law360 if you'd like to read the lawsuit and complaint for yourself.
Update: A Facebook spokesperson told Gigaom that the complaint is "without merit" and that Facebook plans to defend itself "vigorously.”