I received what appears to be a valid email notice informing me I am a possible claimant in a class action suit against Facebook. All I have to do is submit a claim form and I may receive $10 for Facebook illegally using my name, image, or other account information in a sponsored story.
What? They did? When?
Regardless, I feel damaged now. Where's my compensation?
If $10 cannot be paid to each Authorized Claimant, the amount paid to each Authorized Claimant will be reduced pro rata. What this means is that the cash award to individual Authorized Claimants will be determined by subtracting from the $20 million fund any attorneys’ fees and costs awarded by the Court to Class Counsel, any service award paid to the Representative Plaintiffs, and any costs incurred by the Settlement Administrator and Escrow Agent, and then dividing the remaining funds by the number of Authorized Claimants. For instance, if the Net Settlement Fund has $12 million, and there are 1.2 million Authorized Claimants, the payment to each Authorized Claimant will be $10, subject to the Court’s approval. As another example, if the Net Settlement Fund has $12 million, and there are 2.4 million Authorized Claimants, the payment will be $5, subject to the Court’s approval. If the amount to be paid to each Authorized Claimant is calculated to be $4.99 or less, the Net Settlement Fund will be distributed pro rata to the Authorized Claimants, unless the Court orders otherwise as discussed in Section 2.3(a)(ii) of the Settlement Agreement.
However, if the number of claims made renders it economically infeasible to pay any money to Authorized Claimants, the entire Net Settlement Fund will be distributed to the not-for-profit organizations identified below, instead of to Authorized Claimants.
These are the nonprofit organizations who will probably divide up the monetary awards.
Center for Democracy and Technology, Electronic Frontier Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, Joan Ganz Cooney Center, Berkman Center for Internet and Society (Harvard Law School), Information Law Institute (NYU Law School), Berkeley Center for Law and Technology (Berkeley Law School), Center for Internet and Society (Stanford Law School), High Tech Law Institute (Santa Clara University School of Law), Campaign for Commercial-Free Childhood, Consumers Federation of America, Consumer Privacy Rights Fund, ConnectSafely.org, and WiredSafety.org.
Here is why I think I won't receive a dime and the remaining money will instead go to the nonprofits.
$20 million has been set aside for this. Facebook has something like one billion accounts, and probably 90% of them are real people. I have no idea how many accounts were illegally used in sponsored stories, but somewhere in the millions sounds quite plausible. They don't define what constitutes "economically infeasible to pay", but the numbers tell me that each claimant would receive less than a penny because even though $20 million is set aside, the amount paid to the claimants is determined...
...by subtracting from the $20 million fund any attorneys’ fees and costs awarded by the Court to Class Counsel, any service award paid to the Representative Plaintiffs, and any costs incurred by the Settlement Administrator and Escrow Agent, and then dividing the remaining funds by the number of Authorized Claimants.
So the claimants will receive whatever is left of the $20 million, if there aren't too many claimants. Otherwise, the nonprofits divvy up the remainder.
I submitted my claim form anticipating I won't receive a dime but maybe some of the money will go towards a good cause.