Sunday, August 29, 2010


Two new lawsuits involving everybody's favorite online social network, Facebook.

1)  Plaintiffs' lawyers in California have sued Facebook® because it allows minors to "like" things.  Really.  As reported by
The suit, filed today in Los Angeles County Court, accuses Facebook of using the names and images of minors to endorse products--a violation of California law--via its "Like" button. Under the state's law, minors cannot endorse products or services without consent from a parent or legal guardian. When young users of the social network hit the "Like" button, their profiles are updated with this interest for all the public to see.
Lawyers argue that this is tantamount to an endorsement, and that underage members must obtain permission from a legal guardian in order to use the "Like" button. 
2)  Not to be outdone, Facebook's lawyers have sued a start-up (based in Chicagoland) called Teachbook—which apparently runs a community website for teachers—for trademark infringement.  Facebook's argument is that the "-book" suffix is confusingly similar to Facebook's given that both companies operate online social networks.  For a sarcastic layman's response, see here.  

So both students and teachers are in court with Facebook.  Who's next?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments on posts older than 30 days are moderated because almost all of those comments are spam.