Facebook Can Be Sued For Showing Ads That Are “Liked” By Friends

Posted Dec 19, 2011

Facebook can be sued by people who see ads that show that their “friends” like certain brands. This is based on a California law that regards commercial endorsements according to U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh. Koh refused to dismiss a related lawsuit on December 16th that ruled plaintiffs may pursue claims that the company’s sponsored ads violate state law and are fraudulent.

However Koh dismissed a claim that they unjustly enriched itself with the sponsored ads. Currently Facebook earns revenue primarily through the sales of targeted ads, which includes sponsored stories. The plaintiffs in this case said that using what your friends “like” as an ad is an unauthorized use of their names and likenesses.

?Plaintiffs have articulated a coherent theory of how they were economically injured by the misappropriation of their names, photographs and likeness,? stated Koh. Facebook believes that this is case is without merit.