Well, Facebook is generally famous for the massive amount of money it is able to generate through various revenue streams. And it is not often you hear about the company sending money to users. However, it is actually happening. Some Facebook users are receiving $15 checks from the social media platform made out to their names.
In case you are wondering, this is thanks to a class action lawsuit filed by several disgruntled Facebook users over what they saw as the social media platform’s unlawful use of its user’s names and faces in “Sponsored Story” ads without their express consent.
Sponsored stories was something Facebook started a few years ago. These advertisements were made to look like status updates and tricked users into paying attention by making them think that one of the people they followed on the platform was posting these messages. Following a class action lawsuit filed in 2011, Facebook agreed to a $20 million settlement.
Out of this particular amount, around $9 million is going to 614,000 Facebook members that have appeared in the sponsored ads without their approval. And hence the $15 checks that are being received by people all over the place. The case had actually been resolved a early as 2013, however, third party appeals had manged to prevent the company from sending out the checks.
Also, in case you are thinking of joining the class action lawsuit in hopes of getting $15, well, its too late. Only users who filed to join the class action in opposition to the social networking platform by May 2, 2013, are liable to receive the payment.
Interestingly enough, while the folks who had initially filed the case were able to prove that what Facebook did amounted to legal injury, they were unable to muster enough evidence to prove their complaint of illegality on Facebook’s part. Had they succeeded, Facebook’s bill would have run in hundreds of millions and each of the class action lawsuit participants would have been entitled to almost $750.
Ah well, $15 is pretty cool if its free too.